As summer winds down, Walmart is already gearing up for the holidays, expanding its gift assortment, among other things, and bringing in lots of seasonal workers.
More than 80% of customers who plan to shop at Walmart this holiday season are doing so because of low prices, the company maintained. As such, it plans to offer low everyday prices and thousands of rollbacks this holiday on not only gifts but also home goods, electronics and beauty.
Walmart is making the returns easier and more convenient with three new and expanded options that save customers time, the company stated. In October, Walmart customers and Walmart+ members will start being able to tap the new return options. They include an extended holiday return policy for purchases, including electronics and marketplace items, through January 31, 2023. Also included are curbside returns and, for Walmart+ members in select stores, the option of having returns picked up from their doorsteps. Curbside and home returns will launch in select stores during the first week of October and will continue to expand to more stores in the coming months.
The holiday gift offering expands this season with more items, more new brands and more Walmart exclusives, the company noted, across segments including televisions, tablets, wireless headphones, wireless phones, watches appliances, robotic vacuums and furniture and décor. Walmart has increased its toy assortment with 1,400 new items, including more than 500 Walmart exclusives, and a new, expanded assortment of popular ride-on toys and collector segments for Star Wars, Barbie and Transformers.
Walmart is also introducing Spark Good, a new way of giving designed to promote collective action in support of communities across the United States. It includes a suite of giving resources on Walmart.com that provides easy access to programs and tools for nonprofits. Under the Spark Program, customers can round up their purchase totals and donate their change to the charity of their choice at checkout on Walmart.com and Walmart app, and nonprofits can create and manage registries for products that consumers can provide for them.
In addition, Walmart indicated that it has streamlined the website experience to make it faster, more engaging and personalized for its customers, including virtual try-on and “View In Your Home” so customers can see if an item works for them before checking it off their gift list.
Walmart has made it easier to create and manage personal registries and wish lists, and a new scan-to-add feature lets customers use the Walmart app to put an item directly on a registry.
Walmart emphasized that it has been preparing for months to deliver through the holidays, and the company has taken steps to ensure it has products customers want, working with vendors at every stage of the supply chain.
Walmart has added automation to its distribution system to speed order processing, but it also is hiring more than a thousand drivers in Walmart’s private fleet as part of a 40,000-job hiring initiative. The onboarding effort includes not only the full-time permanent truck drivers but also seasonal store employees and customer care staffers.