Lore: Move will 'bring price transparency to Walmart.com'
BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Walmart will begin offering consumers discounts when they order certain online-only items and pick them up at a store instead of having them delivered to their homes.
The discounts will come on top of the fact that consumers don’t have to pay shipping costs on their online orders when they pick them up at a Walmart store.
The retailer gave the example of a VIZIO SmartCast 70-inch 4K Ultra HDTV, which it offers online only for $1,698. A customer who picks the item up at a Walmart store will get a “pickup discount” of $50. The discount on a $148.05 infant car seat is $7.40.
“One of the things I love most about Walmart’s heritage is the maniacal focus on our customers and finding ways to offer them low prices – every day,” Walmart U.S. eCommerce president and CEO Marc Lore said in a blog post. “We do this by creating efficiencies in our business so we can share the savings with them. And, in the online world, we can use our physical stores and supply chain to do some pretty unique things for our digital customers.”
Lore said the pickup discounts are possible because delivering products to its stores allows Walmart to avoid the last-mile costs associated with getting the products to customers’ homes.
“This means, quite simply, it costs less for us to ship to stores,” he said. “So, our customers should share in those savings.”
The pickup discounts will be beginning April 19 on about 10,000 items. Walmart says it plans to expand the program to about 1 million items by June.
“With Pickup Discount, we are beginning to take the ethos behind Jet’s Smart Cart and marrying it with Walmart’s operational efficiency to bring price transparency to life at Walmart.com,” said Lore, who joined Walmart with its acquisition of Jet.com, which was completed in September. That deal was seen as enhancing Walmart’s e-commerce capabilities in order to better compete with Amazon.com Inc.
“We are doing a lot to enhance the Pickup experience to make it even simpler and more convenient for customers,” Lore said. “We’ve also been hard at work aggressively expanding our Online Grocery Pickup service which is now in 600 stores with an additional 500 coming this year.
“We already offer great prices online. We do that every day. Offering a discount on Pickup demonstrates how we can take that to the next level by operating more efficiently and removing costs from the system to give customers even more ways to save.”