A new Walmart service will let third-party vendors hire the retailer to shelve, pack and ship items to customers in a move that could help Walmart compete better with eCommerce giant Amazon, CNBC reported.
Walmart Fulfillment Services, as the app is called, allows outside vendors and smaller businesses to hand over the process of getting items to customers’ doors. The process is slated to give vendors bigger options than they currently have, where they’re relegated to other third-party options, or doing shipping and handling themselves.
New and current vendors with Walmart can sign up starting on Tuesday (Feb. 25), according to Jare’ Buckley-Cox, vice president of Walmart Fulfillment Services.
The official launch this week follows a pilot from a few months ago, in which Walmart shipped items from a variety of categories, including fashion, footwear and electronics.
Walmart said that sellers will benefit from this service because of the lower costs to store and ship goods, compared to other companies. Customers, meanwhile, will have more brands from which to choose, as well as easier returns and a faster shipping process. The retailer declined to list specifically how much it would charge sellers, but promised it was one of the lowest numbers on the market for those types of services.
Walmart is expanding its eCommerce services in a market that is currently in demand. The company has seen success with online grocery shipping, which grew by 37 percent last year, and topped Walmart’s own internal growth targets of 35 percent.
The retailer works with several digital brands, including menswear company Bonobos and outdoor apparel maker Moosejaw. Walmart has also launched other online-focused brands in-house.
In another eCommerce update for the retail titan, Walmart announced that it would be combining its buyer teams for the website and stores, and buyers will be split into categories, such as “groceries” — where any item pertaining to that will be found, regardless of how it’s sold.