With its expansion, Walmart’s grocery delivery could serve 40 percent of U.S. households this year.

Mike Pomranz
March 14, 2018

On the heels of Amazon’s announcement to offer free two-hour delivery on orders from Whole Foods, home grocery shoppers have yet another option: Today, Walmart said it plans to significantly grow its grocery delivery efforts, expanding the service to include 100 new metro areas nationwide by the end of the year.

Walmart’s online grocery delivery is only available in six markets now, but that is set to quickly change. The largest American retailer says that within nine months, its grocery delivery service will serve more than 40 percent of U.S. households, according to the retailer’s press release. “We’re saving customers time by leveraging new technology, and connecting all the parts of our business into a single seamless shopping experience: great stores, easy pickup, fast delivery, and apps and websites that are simple to use,” Greg Foran, Walmart’s president and CEO, said in the release. “We’re serving our customers in ways that no one else can. Using our size and scale, we’re bringing the best of Walmart to customers across the country.”

Walmart didn’t include specifics of where and when the service—which offers delivery “as soon as the same day”—would be expanded; however, Walmart did promise that when its customers use the service online or through the Walmart Grocery App, they will find “the same every day low prices on items they do in stores.”

However, Walmart’s delivery costs $9.95 per order, with a minimum purchase of $30. And while that might sound appealing in the short-term, subscription plans such as Amazon Prime, which offers free grocery delivery, would certainly seem to be more cost effective for regular shoppers.

Still, Walmart’s Vice President of Digital Operations Tom Ward laid out pretty clearly where his company has its biggest advantage. “Ninety percent of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart store, and we serve more than 150 million customers a week, which gives us a unique opportunity to make every day a little easier for busy families,” he said in the press release. “Today, we’re expanding this promise by helping even more customers save time and money without leaving their homes.” Competitors beware.