Walmart and Google announced this morning that they are partnering to sell Walmart’s products through Google's online shopping platform Google Express, as well as Google Home, starting in September. Walmart will be the biggest vendor on the platform to date and will offer free two-day shipping for orders over $35. The partnership is Walmart's latest attempt to expand its e-commerce presence in order to fight back against Amazon.
Here are our key points and analysis on the new partnership:
- Walmart will leverage its unmatched brick-and-mortar network. Walmart plans to use its extensive store network to handle fulfillment for orders made through Google Express. That means that, in addition to having items delivered to their door, orders placed through Google Express will be eligible for the same buy online, pickup in-store (BOPIS) options as standard Walmart orders. The BOPIS option is attractive to consumers not only because of the convenience of Walmart locations, but also because Walmart offers discounts on these types of orders. Even with its Whole Foods acquisition, Amazon cannot match Walmart's brick-and-mortar network. For context, there is a Walmart within 10 miles of approximately 90% of the US population, according to CEO Doug McMillion.
- Google will leverage its data expertise to offer Walmart customers a more personalized shopping experience. Walmart shoppers will be able to link their accounts to Google Express, giving Google access to a huge amount of data. Google will be able to see Walmart customers' purchase histories, which it will process in order to make ads and recommendations more personalized to draw shoppers away from Amazon. Retailers that have implemented personalization techniques have seen sales grow at a rate of 6-10%, which is two to three times faster than other retailers, according to a report by Boston Consulting Group.
- Walmart will get voice-ordering capability. The partnership will allow consumers to make orders for Walmart goods through the voice-controlled Google Assistant. Google Assistant — a rival of Amazon's Alexa — is available on select Android smartphone models and the Google Home smart speaker. Users could reorder common household goods like soap or paper [...]