Save Big at Target with These Money-Saving Tricks

The truth is, there are a lot of ways to save money at favorite stores like Target and Walmart, you just have to know where to look. Some of these stores’ best-kept secrets turn out to be the best ways to save some coin on your groceries and household items. One of those secrets? Decoding price tags, especially sale tags, to make sure you’re getting the best price.

Most stores have standardized number systems for sale prices that allow the store to track markdowns. But if you learn the meaning behind these numbers, you can use that information to buy when items are at their lowest prices. Because nothing’s worse than buying something and learning it went on sale the next week!

We taught you how to read the price tags at Walmart and Aldi, now we’re taking on Target. Here’s what the numerical endings of prices at Target tell you about its price.

How to Decode Price Tags at Target

There’s some nuance to it, but generally speaking, these are the number rules that Target’s prices follow:

  • Items with prices ending in .99 or .00 are their regular, full price.
  • Items with prices ending in .24, .26, .29, .44, .54, .86, .88, .94, and .98 are discounted but not final sale. That means they will be marked down again during the next markdown cycle, so long as there is inventory in the store to support it. That typically takes place two weeks after its original markdown.
  • Items with prices ending in .04 are the final clearance price and will not get lower.

Discounts typically start at 15%, then move onto 30%, 50%, 70%, and 90% every two-week markdown cycle. In fact, if you look in the top right corner of the clearance tag at Target, you can often even find the discount number stated plainly. That will easily tell you where in the markdown cycle that item is.

The exception to these rules is seasonal items (such as holiday-related items or end-of-season clearance), which typically follow a more aggressive markdown pattern. Many times they will start at 50% off, then move to 70% off, and even sometimes 90% off, often within one two-week period. Target just wants the space on its shelves back and is willing to offer incredible deals to get it, so long as you don’t mind waiting a while to show off your new goodies.

If there’s a lot of inventory visible in the store, and you notice it’s only in the first or second round of markdowns, take a chance and wait for a better price to buy.

When Do Items Go on Sale at Target

According to blogger KrazyCouponLady, Target’s markdown schedule typically follows a two-week cycle, meaning items that go on sale will be further discounted two weeks later.

If you’re eyeing a specific item and wondering when the sale will kick in, know that they typically move section by section. This is the “unofficial” markdown schedule pattern:

  • Monday: Baby items, children’s clothing, electronics, and office supplies/gift wrap/stationery
  • Tuesday: Home décor, women’s clothing, and domestic items
  • Wednesday: Food, health and beauty items, men’s clothing, toys, and garden items
  • Thursday: Lingerie, housewares, sporting goods, shoes, and luggage
  • Friday: Cosmetics, jewelry, hardware, automotive, and home improvement

Armed with this knowledge, hopefully, you can save a little more on your next Target run! And if you have a store you want “decoded” next, let us know. After all, with prices this high, we’re all in the savings game together.