That's a major expansion from the six it now delivers in and will see Walmart home delivery groceries available to over 40% of United States households.
The company said it would bring that service to every Whole Foods by the end of the year. "For packing the items together in stores, Walmart will use its collection of more than 18,000 'personal shoppers'". "For shoppers who are new to the program when it rolls out later this year, Walmart is offering $10 off a first order of $50 or more, and free delivery if a basket also meets that threshold".
Customers can order groceries online through Walmart's website or through the company's dedicated grocery app. Walmart's network of personal shoppers then gather the items in each order and prep them for delivery. Since Amazon's Whole Foods acquisition, the ecommerce giant has made an aggressive play for the grocery market - Walmart's most profitable category.
With the recent announcement that it will roll out an online grocery delivery option in over 100 cities, the retailer may get to those targets after all, Seth Sigman, an analyst at Credit Suisse, wrote in a note to clients. The service is for customers who don't want to go into a Walmart to shop. With all those new cities, the service will eventually reach 40 percent of USA households, the company said. This could put it at a disadvantage, but there isn't compelling evidence yet that speed offers a competitive advantage in grocery delivery.
Walmart will also expand its current grocery pickup service this year to an additional 1,000 stores. Target, meanwhile, agreed to acquire delivery startup Shipt previous year to expand its capabilities.
The Walmart delivery service costs $9.95 per order and requires a $30 minimum purchase. Orders can also be placed via a Walmart Grocery app.
"We're moving fast to save our customers time", Tom Ward, vice president of digital operations for Walmart, said on a call with reporters on Tuesday. Walmart shoppers living in more than 100 metro areas will be able to get their groceries delivered to their door.