Wal-Mart using technology to deepen relationships

by Eric Schroeder
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Wal-Mart executives are pleased with the company's e-commerce progress.

BENTONVILLE, ARK. — Executives at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. are pleased with the ways the Bentonville-based retailer is using technology to deepen its relationships with customers.

Doug McMillon, Walmart
Doug McMillon, president and c.e.o. of Wal-Mart

“We are pleased with our e-commerce operating system and happy to have our new e-commerce fulfillment centers operational,” Doug McMillon, president and chief executive officer, said during a May 19 conference call with analysts. “Those are necessary building blocks. I’m excited about the ways we are using technology to deepen our relationship with customers and help them save both money and time. Our grocery pick-up service in the U.S. continues to receive high marks from customers, and we are continuing to expand it.”

Mr. McMillon said Wal-Mart plans to introduce grocery pick-up in nine new markets, bringing its total market coverage to nearly 40 by the end of May, up from 22 markets at the beginning of the year.

Two other technologies — the Wal-Mart app and Wal-Mart Pay — are enhancing the customer experience as well, Mr. McMillon said.

“The Wal-Mart app is allowing us to serve customers in convenient ways, whether it is by finding an item in store, researching a product or refilling a prescription,” he said. “Wal-Mart Pay is enhancing our ability to provide a seamless shopping experience as customers quickly pay with their phone. A few weeks ago we began to expand this service nationwide, and we are on schedule to complete the roll-out by the end of June.”

Net income at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. in the first quarter ended April 30 was $3,079 million, equal to 98c per share on the common stock, down 8% from $3,341 million, or $1.03 per share, in the same period a year ago. Net sales increased 0.9% to $115,904 million from $114,826 million.
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