Walmart reaches out to small and medium retailers through digitization
Small and medium-sized retailers can now purchase the technology Walmart has developed to allow shoppers to buy things online and pick up the purchases at the store. They will also be able to add products to Walmart’s online marketplace with just a few clicks.
Anshu Bhardwaj, vice president of technology strategy and commercialization, Walmart Global Technology, said when the company started on this journey, COVID-19 had just hit. “We reaped the benefits of getting on this omnichannel journey early on.” Walmart’s sales soared both online and in-store as the pandemic took hold.
According to CNBC, while a number of other retailers were forced to close stores to help contain the spread of COVID-19, Walmart was deemed an essential retailer and remained open. Consumers took advantage of online, pickup in-store options. And this helped accelerate the company’s e-commerce growth. Its online sales jumped 79% in the fiscal year ended January 29 with its pickup and delivery sales up triple digits compared to the prior year. Just 7%, as per Adobe Digital Economy Index, of US retailers had a buy online pickup in-store option enabled in January 2018. The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated that to 22% of retailers as of last month.
Walmart has partnered with Adobe to sell the software through a subscription. Bhardwaj, in regards to helping small retailers, said digitization is happening everywhere as the consumer is evolving. He pointed out that there’s no choice but to evolve with them. “We really want to serve our communities, our shareholders, stakeholders and the community better.” The small and medium retailers will use Adobe to power e-commerce sites, including the shopping cart function, search, navigation and product recommendation capabilities. It has to be noted that SMBs, as well as retailers with $1 billion or more in annual sales, already use a variety of Adobe’s e-commerce products, including Coca-Cola, HP, Unilever, and Verizon etc.
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The new software business, as per CNBC, opens up a potential revenue stream for Walmart and it fits in with the company’s strategy to create new businesses that serve new customers and allows profits to flow back into the company to fund further innovation.
Peter Sheldon, senior director of commerce strategy at Adobe, said they can offer a more holistic solution, a best-in-class omnichannel experience. “From Adobe, these businesses will get best-in-class e-commerce experiences, and best-in-class omnichannel experiences from Walmart.”