Walmart is in the midst of a big push to attract more retailers to sell on their platform rather than eBay or Amazon. This push extends to sellers of luxury items you won’t find in Walmart stores, like Air Jordans and designer bags, watches and more.
The primary benefit of allowing a variety of retailers to share this digital real estate is, it solidifies Walmart’s role as a one-stop shop in an age where traditional brick and mortar stores are increasingly threatened by online shopping.
Since 2009, Walmart.com has opened their doors to a select group of third-party retailers, allowing them to use the e-commerce platform to sell things the mega-store doesn’t carry. Yet seven years later, the site still hasn’t caught up to the level of success other massive online channels have seen over the past decade or so. But, that’s about to change. Walmart is gearing up to expand its online marketplace to feature a wide selection of sellers and compete with the likes of Amazon.
In order to be considered as a seller for Walmart, the company evaluates whether your organization is a good fit—this is based on profits, reputation, price structure and more. Here’s an idea of what they’ll ask for:
- Your company’s annual gross merchandise volume (GMV). This must be greater than $1 million across all US marketplaces, both digital and brick and mortar.
- Your US tax ID number and business entity
- You must operate and fulfil orders in the US
The application asks a few more questions, delving into standard operating procedures, shipping and fulfillment practices and more. Though the site is expanding its capacity to add more retailers, you’ll still need to request an invite from Walmart in order to begin the full process.
So, Why Sell on Walmart.com?
Fair question. With options like Amazon, eBay and even Jet, at a first look, it’s hard to see the benefit of selling on Walmart, a super store chain with a reputation that isn’t exactly synonymous with quality.
But, it’s time to rethink that idea. For starters, Walmart is one of the country’s biggest retailers, meaning there is massive marketing potential to its audience of 80+ billion. Consumers already use the website to purchase day to day staples like toilet paper, household cleaning products, and food. Adding your item to the mix allows consumers to get their regular Walmart order, and still order items from your store, making it a convenience-oriented option.
What are the pros for the retailers on this platform? Here’s a few things we think will prove effective for third-party retailers:
Grow your Audience—Walmart has a huge existing customer base. Mixing your products in with theirs puts your offerings in front of a much wider potential audience, meaning you’re sure to see an increase in sales, conversions and more. Consider Walmart.com just one more item in your bag of online sales tricks.
No Fees—Unlike Amazon, Walmart charges third-party retailers a commission per sale, plus the cost of shipping, while Walmart handles payments and processing. Commissions vary based on the category of good, and like competing online marketplaces, it tends to hover around 15%. Bottom line, you won’t pay until you start making sales.
Easy Data Integration–Retailers now have more options to easily feed product data into the platform, either via 3rd party inventory management software like Channel Advisor, or through their own backend software that can be easily integrated with the site.
While it may not be a direct threat to Amazon as of yet, Walmart.com offers some serious potential for retailers looking to increase their exposure, and capitalize in the convenience of the one-stop online shop. But, there is a whole ‘fear of missing out’ element to this—if Walmart.com does become a serious competitor in the massive online retail space, you’ll be glad you’ve learned the ropes before the marketplace is as saturated as Amazon and eBay.