Walmart Inc. (NYSE:WMT) has announced that it will do away with the $35 minimum order value for its Walmart+ membership program. The retailer is making the offer competitive with Amazon.com Inc.’s (NASDAQ:AMZN) Prime subscription ahead of the holiday seasons, especially during this time when online shopping is booming.
Walmart+ subscribers to enjoy free shipping within a day
Subscribers of the loyalty service will from this Friday enjoy free next-day or two-day shopping for items bought on the Walmart website such as clothing, appliances, and toys. The retailer indicated that groceries bought from stores will still have to meet the $35 minimum order value to get free delivery.
The retailer debuted the $98 per year Walmart+ membership program in September this year. Besides the free next-day and two-day shipping, members of the plan also get discounts of 5 cents per gallon on gasoline, and they can also scan items with the Walmart app when shopping in retail stores. The retailer has not disclosed the number of consumers that have so far subscribed to its Walmart+ plan. But, Walmart CEO Doug McMillon indicated in an analyst’s call last month that they are so far delighted with the progress.
Walmart+ launched to compete for online shopping customer
According to analysts, the Walmart+ plan is a way for the company to grow its e-commerce business and compete with rivals for high-income shoppers. However, some analysts saw the $35 minimum order value for free shipping as a weakness compared to Amazon Prime.
Janey Whiteside, the company’s Chief Customer Officer, said that customers had indicated that they wanted the free shipping perk. She said that the ability to toss an item into a cart and checking out immediately irrespective of the total lets customers knock some things off their schedule in no time.
The announcement comes when online shopping is booming as people get busy for the holiday season. The company has also bested Amazon in terms of price and shipping time as it can expedite fulfilments of orders from its 4,700 stores.