Walmart launches dedicated e-commerce site for businesses

Dive Brief:

  • Walmart on Friday launched a dedicated e-commerce site, dubbed Walmart Business, tailored to small and medium business customers. The website will offer “a curated assortment of more than 100,000 items” and is meant to simplify business-related purchases.
  • The site focuses on products that would appeal to small business owners, like office supplies and furniture, snacks, food and beverages, restroom supplies, electronics and facility needs. Walmart says items are organized “in a way that makes sense to organizations.”
  • Purchases made through Walmart Business will be available for in-store or curbside pickup, delivery or shipping.

Dive Insight:

America’s No. 1 retailer is taking another cue from Amazon, in catering to other businesses. The retailer earlier this month announced that it will offer fulfillment tech and delivery services to other companies through Salesforce.

“We know millions of small and medium businesses (SMBs) and nonprofits utilize Walmart’s stores and website to purchase supplies to support their day-to-day operations,” Ashley Hubka, senior vice president and general manager of Walmart Business said in a Friday announcement. “These customers are under more pressure than ever due to inflation and supply chain issues, adapting to a hybrid workforce and post-pandemic behavioral shifts.”

For $98 a year, customers can upgrade to a Walmart Business+ membership. The upgraded membership offers free, no minimum shipping, excluding marketplace and oversized items; free pickup and delivery from stores with a $35 minimum order; 2% rewards on orders of $250 or more; and savings of 5% on eligible items set to subscription.

Organizations can add up to five users to one Walmart Business account. Customers can also share payment information and order histories across teams. In addition, qualified organizations can enroll in Walmart’s tax exemption program. This program automatically removes applicable sales taxes during checkout.

Arkansas-based Walmart has a large brick-and-mortar footprint with 3,572 Supercenters, 600 Sam’s Clubs, and more than 5,300 retail units overall in the U.S. as of late October. That scale leads Walmart to say that it’s within 10 miles of 90% of the U.S. population.

Walmart has steadily expanded its B2B, DTC and omnichannel initiatives in recent years.

In 2021, Walmart began selling its omnichannel capabilities to other businesses. The company entered a strategic partnership with Adobe Commerce for that initiative. Also in 2021, Walmart introduced GoLocal, a white-label delivery service. One year later, the company said GoLocal exceeded 1 million deliveries.

Walmart announced a deal with Popable in November. The agreement allows small businesses to rent space inside Walmart stores on short-term leases ranging from a month to a year. In an announcement at the time, Walmart and Popable said one goal of the partnership is helping startups and small businesses reach new customers during the holiday season.

“As we continue to evolve the shopping experience, we are committed to listening to [small and medium businesses] and nonprofit customers to help them address the challenges they face today, and the ever-changing challenges that come with running an organization,” Hubka said. “We are excited to help our customers save time, money and hassle.”