Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Walmart Bucking Our Desire to Shop Online

Blog Written by 
Christina Zarcadoolas

Walmart is trying on a new business strategy.  Not sure if it's to win consumers or turn them away though. 

According to the WSJ, Walmart has come up with an (inspired) idea - raise the prices of some products available on their online store making them more expensive than the prices they charge when you shop in a "real"  Walmart store. 

OK. I get it. 
Sure, for many people, the prices and selection at Walmart are just what they're looking for.   
But why assume that working class families aren't online!  
Nearly all Americans have cell phone (95%) and almost 80% of those phones are SMART PHONES
Walmart marketing strategists must know this. 

So does this decision by Walmart come in part, from a misguided decision that their shoppers aren't really shopping on-line, or don't want to shop online? 

Let's evaluate that premise.
Walk into a store to shop?
What are they thinking!

Why, when over 51% of shoppers are now buying online (and trending up), would the world's biggest retailer, do something seemingly so dinosaurish? 

Why, when Amazon did over $82 billion in online sales compared to $12.5 billion for Walmart, would they do this? 

Do they really think that they can continue to lure overworked, weary shoppers into their cavernous stores, to wander aimlessly through incoherent aisles, picking up all sorts of completely unnecessary items on the way? 

Maybe they have some weird prejudice against ruralites who often live miles from a bricks and mortar Walmart?

Maybe they think we wax nostalgic for the togetherness of their parking lots on a Saturday morning. 

Or yearn for the all-American competitive sport of shopping as we jockey for position on super sale days.

Maybe Walmart is just trying with all their might to keep their cavernous stores open when other retailers and malls are reconceiving their spaces as in-door senior walking malls or skating rinks. 

Aren't we pretty convinced as consumers that convenience, convenience, convenience is what we're looking for. 

Shop at Walmart, or any other big store on any regular basis? 

To mis-quote the inimitable Dorothy Parker, from "The Waltz"

"Waltz with you?"  I'd love to waltz with you.  I'd love to have my tonsils out, I'd love to be in a midnight fire at sea. 

I ask you...
Are you really ready to trade in your Amazon PRIME to feel the rush of humanity at your shoulders at Christmas time. 

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