When asked about comparisons to Prime on Monday, Whiteside told Recode that “we didn’t necessarily launch Walmart+ to compete with anything else. ” And that answer makes sense; the head-to-head comparison between the services does not look great for Walmart when considering online customers who value the widest selection of goods or the longest list of perks.
Sources previously told Recode that some Walmart execs believe that top-spending Walmart families that subscribe to Amazon Prime will still be attracted to Walmart+ because its fresh grocery prices are often lower than those Amazon offers.
At the same time, Walmart+ will undoubtedly attract comparisons to Amazon’s Prime program, the ultra popular delivery and entertainment membership program that boasts more than 150 million members worldwide and has developed into a retail industry wrecking ball since its launch in 2005.
While Walmart’s overall grocery business is larger than Amazon’s and its prices are often cheaper, one fear is that top Walmart customers could eventually turn to Amazon for groceries as they get sucked further into the Prime suite of perks.
Walmart wants the membership program to be “the ultimate life hack” for customers, Walmart Chief Customer Officer Janey Whiteside told Recode in an interview on Monday, arguing that its perks will save customers both time and money.
On the company’s earnings call earlier this month, CEO Doug McMillon stressed the flexibility of Walmart’s customer offerings. “We’re going to have multiple ways to serve them, and those families will decide in that moment how they want to shop,” McMillon said. “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.
Walmart+ will finally launch in September. Can it compete with Amazon Prime? https://t.co/2yan3E8TW5— Recode (@Recode) September 1, 2020