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Learn all about Walmart.com, the online marketplace extension of the famous retailer, in this Shoppingfeed Channel Partner Profile.
Walmart.com sees up to 100 million unique visitors a month, according to comScore, and is growing every year. With innovations like Online Grocery Pickup, NextDay shipping and a whole host of apps, the company says it’s providing customers with more ways to save time and money by integrating physical shopping with digital shopping.
In 2016, began acquiring several other e-commerce sites, starting with Jet.com. Hayneedle.com (home furnishings) also came with the acquisition of Jet. In 2017, Walmart added Shoes.com (footwear), Moosejaw (outdoor apparel and gear) ModCloth (women’s apparel) and Bonobos (men’s apparel) to its e-commerce portfolio. ELOQUII, Bare Necessities, and Art.com rounded out Walmart’s family of brands in 2018. That same year it also bought Flipkart, the largest e-commerce site in India. (See more on that below.)
How Walmart is working to outshine Amazon
Retail analytics firm First Insight conducted three consumer surveys of about 1,000 people each in December 2017, September 2018 and last September to compile the results. All shoppers were included, whether or not they had a Prime membership.
The findings were enough to make the famous Amazon “smile” logo start drooping at the corners. This year, 55%, expressed a preference for Walmart versus Amazon, while a year earlier only 47% did. The percentage of people who favor Amazon dropped in 2019 to 45%, from about 53% in 2018.
Competitive shipping policies
Walmart introduced Free 2–Day Shipping to counter Amazon’s value proposition. It offers free expedited shipping with no minimum order requirement for Walmart Marketplace listings. Like with Amazon Prime, they promise a quick, hassle-free shipping experience, but unlike Amazon Prime, Walmart doesn’t charge any membership fees to consumers.
Friendlier merchant terms
There are no setup, monthly or subscription fees, which is one of the benefits that Walmart touts in trying to lure sellers from rival platform Amazon. Their seller page also states that sellers are paid instantly.
Global expansion through acquisitions in foreign markets
Walmart, which entered India’s wholesale business back in 2007, had no online presence in the country until 2018, when it bought India-based Flipkart in the world’s largest e-commerce acquisition. This purchase included an online fashion store called Myntra.
That’s a lot of opportunity for third party sellers, although over time they may see profit margins slip as the competition between these two marketplaces continues apace.
Becoming a seller on Walmart.com
Who can sell on Walmart.com
Criteria for acceptance to the marketplace are designed to weed out inexperienced and casual sellers. Serious e-merchants only need apply. Here’s how Walmart describes who gets accepted:
You must have a US Tax ID, use Form W-9, and have Marketplace experience.
You must have a compelling product assortment, competitive pricing, and a GTIN/UPC GSI company prefix number.
They require you to provide “exceptional customer experience,” which means fast and reliable fulfillment, a U.S. warehouse, and provide good customer service.
Fees and Commissions
Like most marketplaces, Walmart.com charges a “referral fee” (aka commission) on each product sold. This can be as low as 6 -8% for PCs and consumer electronics, to a maximum of 20% on jewelry. Most items fall in the 10 – 15% category. You can see the full fee schedule here.
Walmart.com will definitely remain one of the top players, together with Alibaba and Amazon, on the global e-commerce stage.
See more in our Channel Partner series here:
My mission at Shoppingfeed is explaining how to leverage e-commerce platforms and SaaS technology to e-merchants who just want to run their business and make more money.
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