Walmart expanding online grocery service

Galtero Lara
Marcha 14, 2018

The delivery service has been tested in Dallas-Fort Worth since August with Walmart employees filling the orders and Uber drivers making the deliveries.

The percent of the US covered by the service is even more important than the city count.

Target acquired Shipt, a grocery delivery service, for $550 million late previous year and is offering same-day delivery on groceries, essentials and other products in some cities with plans for more. With Walmart being the US' largest grocer, the move may help the retailer fight Amazon from one of its strongest positions. It has already been working with Uber as it has piloted its efforts.

The service, now in six cities, will roll out to more than 40 percent of USA households by the end of the year, the company said on Wednesday. Whole Foods also now offers delivery through Instacart, which ships groceries for Kroger, Acme and Costco, too.Target late previous year bought online grocery delivery startup Shipt for $550 million, adding to the competition.

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Walmart has been preparing its stores for its online grocery business, re-outfitting many of them to support the service, CNBC previously reported.

It expects to make online order pickup of groceries available at about 2,200 stores before 2019. It will add curbside pickup to 1,000 more locations by the end of the year, Ward said. "We will leverage our footprint where it makes the most sense". That service uses personal shoppers to select items and then take them to shoppers' cars parked at the curb. There is no subscription required, as is the case for Amazon Fresh and a handful of other, more costly options on the market. He also said Tuesday that the company now employs more than 18,000 personal shoppers with additional hires planned as both grocery pickup and delivery services are rolled out to a larger audience this year.

The service is now available in six markets: Dallas, Denver, Orlando, FL, Phoenix, San Jose, CA, and Tampa, FL.

Carol Spieckerman, a retail consultant and president of Spieckerman Retail, said the grocery delivery expansion should give Walmart an opportunity to "forge relationships with new customers", especially those who value convenience but don't want to navigate the retailer's stores.

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