NEW YORK (AP) - Target is offering for the first time free holiday shipping on all items, including $6 lipsticks. The discounter is throwing itself in the ring to compete better with the likes of Amazon.

The Minneapolis-based chain says its free shipping offer starts today and will last through Dec. 20. The move is unusually early for a retailer - coming weeks before the official holiday season kickoff over the Thanksgiving weekend - and could squeeze Target's profit margins. But the strategy underscores how retailers are willing to do whatever it takes to grab shoppers in the holiday shopping season, which accounts for about 20 percent of the retail industry's total sales