So you’re scaling your business and Walmart’s your next stop? Great!
Exciting as this expansion period may be, it could also turn into a big disappointment if you’re not taking measured steps. The stakes are even higher when stretching your arms to Walmart, one of the world’s largest marketplaces that can potentially steer the direction of your company to either new heights or deeper lows.
One of the biggest challenges of selling on Walmart is that the platform is much different than the other two big players. Meaning, even if you’re a pro Amazon and eBay seller, you’re going to have some hard time in this marketplace. You might even have to struggle with unsatisfactory sales if you aren’t careful enough to craft unique strategies.
So before you jump to this ship and commit your resources there, here are 5 important things every Amazon and eBay seller must remember when planning to sell at Walmart:
No easy entryway to Walmart
You need approval before you start selling at Walmart. This step has helped the marketplace limit the entry of mediocre sellers and maintain high quality. They have a set of terms and policies that you need to fulfill before you become a full-time Walmart seller. While these terms aren’t necessarily very inflexible, you need to be attentive throughout the process.
Walmart seller application process will take about 10 minutes. But the approval can take quite a bit of time; about 2 to 3 weeks. The people there will screen your application personally and see if you’re a right fit for the marketplace or not. If you have a prior experience of online selling or have a well reputed online store (with good reviews), it would tremendously help your case.
So don’t assume getting on Walmart would be just as easy as starting on Amazon and eBay. You need to prepare for it. The first thing you need to do is read their guidelines.
Product listing requires more attention
While product listing on Walmart may seem similar to that of Amazon and eBay, it’s slightly different if you factor optimization. Ranking on Walmart is very difficult. Even with a limited number of third-party sellers, competition level in every niche is high. You need to take a bit of time in listing your products on this marketplace to ensure the product is fully optimized to rank high on searches for selected keywords.
Comparatively, Walmart requires more product data. So fill in all the right fields. Use the right product title and description. Include relevant keywords. Ensure that by reading this, the potential customer gets sufficient information about the product.
In short, take your time in setting products. It would take some time, but doing it properly is very crucial. So have patience.
Focus on shaping your brand
Unlike Amazon and eBay where the focus is solely on the products, there’s a larger room to establish your brand name on Walmart. Instead of trying to sell individual products at the cheapest, you must take proactive steps to ensure your brand/store name becomes recognizable and trusted. Prominently place your store name throughout the listing. The copies you write, make sure they are engaging and personalized.
Aim to offer your customers an experience rather than a product. Communicate with them properly (over email, in the review section, on social channels). Connect with them not as a mechanized salesman but as a breathing-living business.
All-in-all, have a different selling strategy on Walmart altogether. The more you invest in your brand or store name, higher will be your business sustainability in this marketplace.
You can’t use FBA
Yes, this is quite a bummer. You might have been successfully leveraging the power of FBA to sell products on eBay, but you simply cannot do that when selling at Walmart. You will likely listen about this in Walmart’s policies or one of the emails they would send you during the registration process.
One of the reasons behind this is Walmart doesn’t want Amazon’s name sold from its platform. And rightly so, given they are fierce competitors.
So you would need to have another shipping and logistic partner by your side.
Indeed, this may add up to your stress—you’re going to have to handle your order fulfillment on a different platform. But this is where you can let your multi-channel e-commerce solution make your life easier. On their centralized platform, you would easily be able to integrate your Walmart store with the shipping solution. You can even sync all your various marketplaces under a single roof. This step would definitely easy up for your inconvenience, making managing multiple channels (marketplaces, webstores, and logistic platform) extremely easier and quicker.
And not to forget, multi-channel e-commerce solutions like ChannelSale also bring a host of unique features that provide simplified product listings and order management on Walmart. To that, with their pre-configured integration with other top shopping carts like Magento, WooCommerce, Shopify, Bigcommerce, Volusion and more, they promise to add more ease and expediency to your plate.
Shipping must be on-time. Always.
Walmart takes its customers’ experience and satisfaction very seriously. No wonder, if your on-time shipment rate is anywhere less than 99 percent, it could seriously impact your ranking and seller scoreboard. Plus, not to forget the negative feedbacks it would bring.
So, first, you would have to be thoughtful (and aggressive) in your Expected Shipping Date (ESD). Next, you must have the right order fulfillment partner who you can rely on to make on-time deliveries. Always strive to ship well before the ESD. Also, at the same time, you must make sure to keep your sales cancellation rate less than 1.5 percent. Anything more than this can damage your hard-earned high ranking!
These are 5 important things that every Amazon and eBay seller must keep in mind before they start selling at Walmart. This leading marketplace has opportunities in abundance—even more for those sellers who are smart in making their pricing and marketing strategies. However, Walmart has its own challenges. If you’re looking to sell big here, you’re going to have to embrace these challenges with right solutions that stem from earlier planning and data-driven actions.
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