As merchants have seen by now, the average consumer has increasingly high expectations of convenience when it comes to shopping online.
So much so that 76% of customers say convenience is a key priority when choosing a retailer, according to Linnworks research. One of the best ways to provide this convenience to customers is to put your products on the sales channels where they're already spending their time.
In this article, we’ll discuss why Walmart Marketplace should be one the sales channels you sell on, how to start selling on Walmart and how an automated inventory and order management system will help you sell better on Walmart Marketplace.
According to Walmart, “Walmart Marketplace is a curated community of respected, professional sellers who offer only top-quality, authentic products and best-in-class customer service.”
With more than 120 million monthly visitors, Walmart Marketplace is a top performing sales channel to sell on, landing only second behind Amazon in terms of US ecommerce market share. Listing your products on marketplaces like Walmart is important for business growth, opening the door to a new audience as well as being where your current customers are already shopping.
According to Linnworks research, more than nine in ten shoppers start looking for products on online marketplaces. The reason being that consumers enjoy the convenience that a marketplace provides, shopping for multiple products with lots of choices all from one platform.
Walmart is all about customer satisfaction and trust.
Every Day Low Price (EDLP) is at the center of Walmart’s strategy. They have consistently focused on customers as a #1 priority, in turn building up a loyal customer base. Selling on Walmart is selling to customers who are loyal to Walmart itself.
Walmart has mastered the art of convenience with 4,700+ US stores located within just 10 miles of 90% of the US population. According to Walmart, "We're creating an experience that lets customers shop anytime, anywhere — delivering exactly what they want, when they want it."
Walmart has one of the world’s largest supply chains and offers sellers the ability to store their inventory at Walmart fulfillment centers. Walmart takes care of the order management process and their fulfillment service picks, packs and ships orders after they're are placed, striving towards the class 2-day delivery promise. By doing so, Walmart helps you turn one-off shoppers into loyal customers.
They'll also manage the returns process through Walmart Fulfillment Services, which is especially helpful if you're serving an industry with a high volume of returns.
By selling on Walmart Marketplace, you'll have access to their loyal consumer base of over 120 million unique monthly visitors. Plus, the Walmart seller community is composed of respected, professional sellers who only offer high-quality products so you’ll be selling your products alongside other established and well respected sellers.
Walmart says it is the world’s largest and most innovative omnichannel retailer and it’s certainly one of the fastest growing ecommerce channels in the US.
First, to sell on Walmart, you have to be approved. Here are Walmart Marketplace’s qualifications:
First, make sure you have a history of success with other marketplaces or ecommerce sales platforms. Walmart views having been successful with their competition as a good thing. Also, Walmart focuses on sellers that have a compelling product catalog, as well as competitive pricing and speedy and reliable fulfillment. Ultimately, you need to have high-quality products to sell on Walmart.
Walmart lists prohibited products, so be sure to check the list and make sure you don’t sell any of these products. Prohibited products include alcoholic beverages, hazardous materials and specific types of food.
To complete an application, head over to the application page for your respective region:
Remember that customer experience is one of Walmart's top goals, so be prepared to offer fast and reliable fulfillment, have a track record of first-in-class customer service and have a B2C warehouse or other shipping and returns capability (like Walmart Fulfillment Services or fulfillment through a 3PL provider).
With an inventory and order management system, you can connect your Walmart seller account via API. Here are the benefits of consolidating your processes into a back end automation system:
With inventory across all sales channels things can get chaotic quickly if you are tracking inventory manually. Be in control with a centralized view of all inventory across all sales channels with an automated platform.
The more you sell and grow, the more you will need an automated system. An automated inventory and order management system grows with you as your business grows.
When managing inventory on Walmart Marketplace in addition to multiple other sales channels, you want to make sure you’re not overselling products or creating stock outs, which leads to a negative customer experience. As an example, when a basketball looks to be in stock from the customer’s viewpoint on Walmart, but in reality it’s not in stock and the shipment doesn’t get to the customer, the customer will then instead find a basketball from your competitor.
Once a customer places an order, there should be an automated system that immediately goes into action on the back end to ensure orders are correct. And in addition, to ensure that orders get to the customer on time. An automation system is especially important for growing businesses that experience higher and higher volumes of orders on both Walmart Marketplace and other sales channels like Amazon.
A good inventory management system also integrates with major shipping carriers and 3PLs — And, for Walmart Marketplace Sellers, an automated system like Linnworks integrates with Walmart Fulfillment Services. WFS stores, picks, packs and ships your orders. WFS also handles customer care and returns (in store or home pickup).
If you want to truly create a world-class customer experience, you need to meet customers where they already spend their time by selling your products in multiple sales channels. This requires making the shopping experience seamless and effortless.
Customer experience is not just about how a customer interacts with your brand one time, it’s about how they interact with your brand over and over again. You must provide a consistent experience to keep customers coming back.
With an automated inventory and order management system, you’ll have complete visibility of inventory levels across sales channels and warehouses so you’ll know how much and where stock is at all times, so you don’t oversell on product. And because customer experience continues with the post-purchase experience, returns and exchanges can be managed more efficiently with automation.
A powerful tool with order and inventory management software is demand forecasting. Knowing how much stock order during particular time periods helps you ensure you don’t order too much or run out of stock too quickly, especially around high-demand periods in the year, so that you meet the expectations of your customers.
Marketplaces provide a global audience to expand into new markets.
Walmart technologies is leveraging its global expansion plans and aiming to hire thousands of people this year to stay ahead of the commerce game with new AI and innovative technologies. There are more than 120 million monthly visitors to Walmart and it is the second largest marketplace in the US, so a crucial part to Walmart’s global growth model is to open this US marketplace to UK sellers. Walmart has chosen Linnworks as an exclusive partner for Walmart Marketplace’s UK and Ireland launch.
Speak to us to find out how Linnworks can connect and automate your commerce operations so you can capture every revenue opportunity.