cloud
TECHNOLOGY

Report: Walmart’s weapon of choice in its war with Amazon—the cloud

BY CSA Staff

A discount giant has found a way to narrow the gap with its online rival, Amazon.

Walmart hopes to take on Amazon in its e-commerce war by crunching almost limitless swathes of customer data in-house. Its weapon of choice: six giant facilities, or “server farms,” that connect to the cloud, according to CNBC, which cited Reuters.

According to the report, each facility is larger than 10 football fields, and the initiative took millions of dollars — and nearly five years — to build. However, efforts are starting to pay off as Walmart’s online sales have been on the rise for the last three consecutive quarters — far outpacing wider industry growth levels.

While most retailers rent the computing capacity they need to store and manage such information, Walmart opted for an internal cloud network, one that mimics Amazon’s use of cloud-powered big data to drive digital sales. The discount giant hopes this configuration will translate into larger portion of online shopping wallet share, the report said.

To read more, click here.

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

Polls

Are you worried the proposed new tariffs will affect your business?
TECHNOLOGY

Sam’s Club launches free shipping—and overhauls membership program

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Sam’s Club is making changes as it looks to compete head-on with rivals Amazon and Costco.

The warehouse club chain is rolling out free shipping on “most of the items” sold online, including nearly every Member’s Mark private-label item, with no minimum purchase required, the retailer said in a blog on its website. The news comes one month after the retailer abruptly closed 63 stores, and said some of the shuttered locations would be turned into fulfillment centers.

Sam’s Club also added that its efforts will be supported by tighter supply chain operations. The company is on track to open its first e-commerce fulfillment center in Memphis, Tennessee, with the first packages expected to ship in early spring.

Looking ahead, the retailer plans to bolster this network “in the back-half of the year,” with more distribution centers. Other regions being considered for fulfillment centers include Texas, Central Florida, the Mid-Atlantic, Southern California, Chicagoland, and the Northeast.

“Our Memphis center will teach us a lot as we build out this new e-commerce supply chain,” Jamie Iannone, CEO, SamsClub.com and executive VP of membership and technology, said in the blog.

These new distribution centers will be augmented by up to 12 of the closed locations that will be converted into regional e-commerce fulfillment centers.

Sam’s Club is also “simplifying” its membership structure. Going forward, there will be two levels of membership: Club and Plus. Club (formerly Sam’s Savings) will be $45 a year, and Plus will be $100 annual fee. The company is also lowering the fee for additional Club memberships to $40.

These rates take a direct hit at Amazon, which charges $99 a year for its Prime membership. However, Sam’s Club’s new shipping program does not offer free two-day shipping.

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

Polls

Are you worried the proposed new tariffs will affect your business?
TECHNOLOGY

Juniper: Global E-commerce sales to rise 10% this year

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Online spending continues to climb — and alternative payments are driving this growth.

The value of global consumer spending on remote payments for digital and physical goods will surpass $3.3 trillion this year — up 10% on 2017’s total of $3 trillion, according to “Mobile & Online Remote Payments for Digital & Physical Goods: Opportunities & Forecasts 2018-2022, from Juniper Research.

According to the data, alternative payment mechanisms will comprise an ever-increasing proportion of online spend. For example, PayPal already accounts for 20% of mobile and online physical goods transactions made outside China. Meanwhile, the success of Alipay and Weixin Pay within China means that these two players combined now account for 45% of global payment volumes.

There is also a significant opportunity for more nascent options, such as the various original equipment manufacturer (OEM)-Pay solutions and carrier billing — payment options created by one company and marketed by another. For example, Amazon recently adopted an OEM-Pay option in Japan for physical goods purchases, the report said.

It is not all good news however, as there are still major pain points for merchants and consumers to overcome. For example, European merchants need to be aware of implications of new regulations — and the upgrades required to comply. One is the PSD2 card-on-file regulation that requires consumers to ‘white-list’ or grant approval for their payment details to be stored. It is claimed that Secure Customer Authentication (SCA) obligations could potentially adversely impact conversion rates by increasing friction at checkout, the report said.

The study also revealed that retailers were struggling to resolve issues around customer identification within the broader commerce framework.

“Payment processors and other key stakeholders need to work closely with merchants to ensure they can recognize individual consumers, regardless of device and whether they are purchasing online or offline, to deliver the optimal experience across the retail lifecycle,” said Dr. Windsor Holden, head of forecasting & consultancy at Juniper Research.

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

Polls

Are you worried the proposed new tariffs will affect your business?