To Catch Up, Walmart Moves to Amazon Turf
Walmart, the country’s largest retailer, which for years didn’t blink at would-be competitors, is now under such a threat from that it is frantically playing catch-up by learning the technology business, including starting @WalmartLabs at Walmart Global E-Commerce, its dot-com division.
The two retail behemoths, one the king of the physical store and the other the conqueror of the online world, are battling over e-commerce — competing for the most talented engineers, trying to gain the upper hand in the new frontier of same-day delivery and warring over online pricing.
They want to control not just Internet shopping but all shopping. Even as Walmart pours money into technology, Amazon is building a physical presence across the nation, adding warehouses and pickup locations. Both companies’ moves indicate that they believe the future of commerce is not just stores and not just online but a combination of the two. [ … ]
Following Amazon, Walmart has revamped its online and mobile technology. It has software to watch social media like Pinterest for popular products and to monitor online prices and lower them accordingly or alert merchants.
And it has created a mobile app that flips into in-store mode when customers enter a store and guides them to the milk or celery and offers digital coupons; customers can scan items as they shop for quick self-checkout.
[ … ]