Walmart is offering an incentive to entice sellers to try its WFS fulfillment service, which it launched two years ago in February 2020. The company’s Chief Financial Officer Brett Biggs told Wall Street analysts last week that the expansion of WFS has been key to bringing more sellers to Walmart’s Marketplace. “Growing eCommerce Marketplace and WFS have been a priority over the past couple of years as we’ve invested to expand fulfillment capacity, introduce new services for sellers, and double the number of items available for customers. In fact, we expect to have over 200 million items in our eCommerce assortment by the end of the year,” he said.
The Walmart promotion comes as Amazon has seen long-term success with its FBA fulfillment program (56% of Amazon’s unit sales in Q4-2021 came from sellers including FBA orders) and as eBay promises to expand its fulfillment service globally in partnership with Orange Connex.
Walmart’s Vice President of Walmart Fulfillment Services (WFS) Jaré Buckley-Cox said the program has seen significant growth over the past 2 years, writing in today’s announcement: “Last year, U.S. GMV fulfilled by WFS grew 500%, and we are expecting robust growth to continue.” And it’s benefitting sellers – “Many sellers who use WFS to fulfill their items are seeing on average 50% sales growth for those items,” she said.
Buckley-Cox spent 8 years at Amazon before arriving at Walmart in 2018.
Walmart’s promotion is designed to make it less costly to try out the service. Walmart is offering incentives to sellers who sign up for WFS and send (“inbound”) at least one item between Feb. 21 and April 30, 2022. Sellers receive free storage and 10% off fulfillment for the first 90 days.
Items arrive in a Walmart box and are categorized as “fulfilled by Walmart,” which the company says help build credibility with customers and further drives trust and transparency.
Walmart’s Buckley-Cox said in a comment on LinkedIn today, “From the very beginning it was our vision to build WFS for sellers to grow their business based on the principles of trust, transparency and partnership. It has been exciting to see the response in the seller community! We grew by more than 500%! We are looking forward to extending this opportunity to even more sellers.”