Walmart has announced this morning that it’s directly taking on Amazon’s upcoming Prime delivery changes with its own commitment to 1-day delivery. And in typical fashion, Walmart is making sure to point out that its own service will not require an additional membership, unlike Amazon. Today’s announcement comes after a decade long journey by the brick-and-mortar retail store to keep in step with Amazon and other online retailers for customers. Back 2011 Walmart introduced same day pick-up followed by two-day shipping in 2017. Seemingly every move Amazon has made during this time period has been met by a Walmart response. The question really is, does anyone care about Walmart NextDay delivery? We explore further below.
Walmart NextDay shipping arrives to match Amazon
Walmart will be rolling out its NextDay delivery program to customers in select cities over the coming months. At first, it will be available in Southern California, Phoenix and Las Vegas. It will then roll out over time through 2019 with a “plan to reach approximately 75% of the U.S. population this year, which includes 40 of the top 50 major U.S. metro areas.”
At launch Walmart promises to offer 220,000 items across a wide range of categories as a part of its NextDay delivery service. This includes diapers and laundry detergent to toys and electronics, “with more assortment to be added.”
Walmart 1-day shipping will be available for customers by tolling into the NextDay delivery experience when shopping online. Interestingly enough, Walmart is requiring that your entire order be eligible for 1-day delivery. At launch, there will be no choice for splitting up delivery between two options.
Marc Lore, President and CEO, Walmart eCommerce U.S. explains this new venture further:
Our new NextDay delivery isn’t just great for customers, it also makes good business sense. Contrary to what you might think, it will cost us less – not more – to deliver orders the next day. That’s because eligible items come from a single fulfillment center located closest to the customer. This means the order ships in one box, or as few as possible, and it travels a shorter distance via inexpensive ground shipping.
Surprise, surprise, Walmart is responding to Amazon again. While competition is a good thing for everyone, Walmart’s limited rollout to the west coast is going to be a non-starter for many. Amazon is expected to push 1-day delivery across the country before long and shoppers will likely reach for the online giant instead of waiting for Walmart to catch up. I’m happy to see Walmart continue to try to stay even with Amazon, but it’s disappointing that this service will slowly spread across the country versus a more aggressive rollout.