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Walmart CEO shared new details about the Walmart+ membership program. WMT stock lost 0.66% on Tuesday.
Walmart Inc (NYSE: WMT) Chief Executive Officer CEO has given investors a hint about the long-awaited Walmart+ membership program. Initially billed to launch back in July, the proposed loyalty-based program has stalled without a definitive date in view.
Meanwhile, WMT stock closed with a 0.66% fall yesterday, at $134.71. Today in the pre-market, it is 0.0074% up.
CEO Doug McMillon acknowledges that there has been a ‘lot of buzz’ surrounding Walmart+ and noted that the membership program will offer customers benefits like speedy deliveries and low prices, an incentive that will garner wide embrace at such a time as this.
As he acknowledged, the Walmart+ program will be beneficial to both the customers and the retailers alike. For the retailer, Walmart CEO said, it will strengthen relationships with shoppers. That will encourage repeat and bulk purchases and provide data about customer preferences.
The proposed launch of Walmart+ will not be the first time the big-box retailer will be rolling out a value-added service centered on improving customer service. The company launched an unlimited grocery delivery membership service last year and its success contributed to helping WMT stay ahead of the curve during the pandemic. Based on this, the CEO said:
“Since that launch, we have proven to ourselves that we can pick and deliver a broad set of categories across the Supercenter — not just food and consumables, but a wide assortment of general merchandise, we think that assortment breadth and our ability to deliver with speed nationally combined with a few other benefits for customers will result in a compelling proposition.”
Going by the competition a service such as Walmart+ will face including that from Amazon Prime service, the time it’s taking to launch may be to get off on the right foot.
Can Walmart+ Provide the Needed Competition Amazon Prime Needs?
Walmart+ is a subscription-based service that was earlier hinted to cost about $98 per annum. With the subscription, customers will enjoy same-day delivery of groceries and general merchandise, discounts on fuel at Walmart gas stations, and early access to product deals.
Based on the price difference, the proposed lower cost Walmart+ service may serve as the needed boost for customers to boycott Amazon Prime which currently goes for $119 a year. As a response to customer’s failure at securing shopping slots during the pandemic, Walmart+ will give customers access to reserve delivery slots as well as open-slot notifications.
Also, a limited two-hour express delivery option will also be available. As noted by Vox Recode, Walmart CEO and executives have been creating measures to launch Walmart+ such that customers attach enough values to subscribe to the program while also offering completely different products and services that will eliminate a side by side comparison with Amazon Prime.
It can be expected that when launched, Walmart+ will roll out several unique products that will be available only to its subscribers as compared to the general user of its app and websites.
Walmart CEO Affirms Walmart+ will Put Customers in Charge
Doug McMillon also said that Walmart+ is designed to give absolute control to the customers as the company will serve its customers in a variety of ways. He explained:
“We’re going to have multiple ways to serve them, and those families will decide in that moment how they want to shop, and sometimes they’ll be in the store, and sometimes they’ll do pickup, and sometimes they’ll do delivery, and many of them will buy a membership, and when they do they’ll get benefits from that.”
Should this priority and flexibility be given customers with more value additions to come, Walmart may improve on its Q2 e-commerce sales in the U.S. which grew by 97%.