Target logo 1800x1277
The Target brand might never have existed if the Westminster Presbyterian Church hadn’t been burned on Nicollet Avenue in Minneapolis. Seven years after the fire, American businessman George Draper Dayton bought the land to build the first six-story Goodfellows Dry Goods store. In 1903, the commercial facility was renamed the Dayton Dry Goods Company, and in the 1960s it became known as Target. It is now one of the largest retailers in the United States and offers a wide range of products, from groceries to iPhones.

Meaning and history

target logo evolution

In 1960, Dayton Company executives wanted to open several discount stores to add variety to the family-owned chain of department stores. But before that, they decided to create a new brand from scratch and think about all the nuances, right down to the logo.

The concept was developed by then-chief marketing officer Stewart K. Widdess. His team could choose between two hundred names. The most advantageous variant seemed to them “Target,” a word that symbolized the store’s desire to hit the mark and guess what goods society needs. It also formed the basis for the famous red and white logo.

1962 – 1968

target 1962 1968 logo
target 1962 1968 logo

On May 1, 1962, the Target store was officially opened. Buyers were greeted by a sign with six concentric circles. Their colors alternated: three circles, including the central one, were white and three more (one after the other) were red. In the middle were the horizontal letters of “Destiny” in black cursive.

It was the first brand logo created by the design team led by Stewart K. Widdess. To link the brand name to the name, they used the inside of the lens, the Bullseye, as the centerpiece.

1968 – present

Target logo 1800x1277
1968 – present target logo

In the late 1960s, Target stores began popping up across the country. Simultaneously with the expansion, the company changed its logo, simplifying it to a red circle surrounded by two rings: white and red. The inscription has disappeared, so the symbol has become more versatile. It’s remembered for the fact that it was used on an advertising sign that was designed especially for the opening of Shop at Target in 1969 – the famous target looked like a dangling earring.

1968 – 1974

target 1968 1974 logo
target 1968 1974 logo

In 1968, designers narrowed the colored circles to fit the word “Target” on the right. It was written in oblique white letters with a black outline. The Helvetica sans-serif typeface gave the word sign a concise and impressive look.

1974 – 2004

target 1974 2004 logo
target 1974 2004 logo

In the mid-1970s the style has changed. The letters became straight, black, and bold. The massive lettering logo appeared on some posters and promotional materials until 2004.

2001 – 2006

target 2001 2006 logo
target 2001 2006 logo

After another redesign, the word “Target” moved down and Bullseye – up. In the new version, all the letters are lowercase and red.

2004 – 2016

Target transparent logo 2500x1774
The designers have transformed the capital letters for a classic look. The red color remained.


target color scheme

More than 96% of American consumers associate the iconic red and white target with Target, according to a survey. This was achieved thanks to a high-profile advertising campaign carried out by the brand’s owners. In 1999 a real Bullseye appeared: a bull terrier named Arielle. The marketers decided to decorate the dog’s left eye with three concentric circles that looked exactly like the retailer’s emblem.

Customers have always loved the clean design and minimalism of the logo. Perfect symmetry makes it harmonious: all sides match in shape, color and size. The red and white rondel evokes only positive associations, because it symbolizes the goal, the embodiment of determination and success.

The word “Target” has been written since 1968 in a font similar to Helvetica Neue from the Bold subfamily. It belongs to the German company Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG and is distributed solely on a remunerative basis.

The color scheme hardly ever changed except for the occasional use of black lettering. Now all elements are red and white. In addition, there are two versions of the Bullseye, which differ in the alternation of colors. An emblem with two white circles is relevant when the background is red. It is often featured on billboards at Target shopping centers.

Red (shade # CC0000) and white balance each other. The first color symbolizes energy and passion, while the second symbolizes elegance and style. Its classic contrast is designed to capture the attention of buyers.