Published: Thu, March 15, 2018
Culture | By Glenn Strickland

Walmart to expand grocery delivery to 100 metro areas in US

Walmart to expand grocery delivery to 100 metro areas in US

The expansion of grocery delivery in 2018 will continue to rely on "crowdsourced delivery services", says Walmart.

Walmart is doubling down on grocery delivery by offering the service to 40% of USA households by the end of the year at a cheaper price than competitors.

While Walmart will normally charge a $9.95 delivery fee on orders that total a minimum of $30, if you use the code FRESHCAR you can try it for free. Groceries are a big part of what keeps Wal-Mart afloat, especially as Amazon has begun eating into its margins elsewhere in retail. Only 23 percent of Americans now buy groceries online, but 70 percent will do so in five to seven years, according to joint research from Nielsen and the Food Marketing Institute.

"Walmart gets about 56% of its annual USA sales from its food business and relies on its grocery offering to cultivate customer loyalty", points out Fortune's Phil Wahba.

"It reflects a willingness to take on a cost that many others have been pushing off onto delivery services like Instacart and Shipt", he said.

About 800 stores will operate the service.

Walmart Grocery Delivery includes fresh produce, meat, seafood and bakery items, along with pantry staples, consumables and seasonal general merchandise.

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"There is no subscription required, as is the case for Amazon Fresh and a handful of other, more costly options on the market", write Lauren Thomas and Lauren Hirsch for CNBC.

Walmart plans to use its team of personal shoppers to pull together orders in stores and will team up with crowdsourced delivery services including Uber to send groceries. "We are extremely happy with the results that we have had out of the USA", he added, noting the company does not have a specific timeline in mind for the rollout.

Walmart launched its online grocery delivery service not too long ago.

Already, Whole Foods partnership with Amazon has enabled customers to order groceries delivered through Prime Now.

Ward declined to directly address rival delivery services.

Former Walmart CEO and President Bill Simon discusses what Walmart is doing in order to compete with e-commerce behemoth Amazon. But it can't ignore consumer demand for grocery delivery forever.

To order, customers will go to Walmart.com/grocery or the Walmart Grocery app to build an online basket, place order and select delivery time.

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