How Walmart is trying to reinvent in-store shopping to win Black Friday

You can increase your online shopping, but most of the actual sales are still in real stores. There is no better way to emphasize that than Thanksgiving Black Friday, which is a Christmas shopping special event that consumes American retail stores every Thanksgiving day. According to Adobe Analytics, last year Black Friday had nearly $ 8 billion in sales. The score for new gadget categories such as smart speakers and streaming set-top boxes has been reduced to the hopes they are trying to steal, but it's best to get discounts on expensive electronics like 4K TV, video game consoles and laptops as a holiday gift.

However, as retailers break down the boundaries between Black Friday and Cyber ​​Monday, there is a growing need to improve their in-store experience with a lot of online transactions. Many retailers who are fiercely competing with Amazon's dominant e-commerce operations now need to give consumers incentives to buy goods in stores, or at least order online, to avoid waiting time for shipment.

A store that can make the most of online offline mixes like Black Friday is Wal-Mart, one of the most sophisticated technology operators in the retail industry, and a big-box retailer with the biggest footprint in the US industry. Walmart, who acquired about two years ago, has invested considerable resources in creating consistent hybrid online and offline workloads using mobile apps, cloud computing, and critical logistics and analytics software. It's all about selling as many products as possible on as many platforms as possible.

In a retailer's story, this is called the Omni Channel experience, and as Wal-Mart's futuristic, large retailer, it always depends on the ability to serve customers at any time of the day, especially during events like Black Friday. Of course, Wal-Mart in the Amazon is the biggest competitor in the retail industry and is actively committed to expanding into new areas that Wal-Mart is currently dominating, such as grocery stores, pharmacies and convenience stores.

Amazon accounts for about 40 percent of Wal-Mart's annual sales exceed $ 500 billion. However, Jeff Bezos CEO's commitment to new market penetration is finding a solution for all retailers, from Walmart to CVS and Kroger, to better modernize their business at events where Amazon is growing and expanding . Wal-Mart has partnered with several technology companies to improve its delivery network. We have also begun working closely with Microsoft through multi-year cloud computing agreements with Microsoft's Azure platform to improve many of the custom software elements that help to operate online backends and stores, warehouses and data centers.

Jae Evans, vice president of global technology engineering and operations at Walmart, says events such as Black Friday are a real test of every effort that has been made to improve mobile, online and in-store infrastructure. Evans told The Verge "We can emulate this environment, called stress testing, so we can see how customers get into the store and what they will do. Run a lot and iterate, optimize and tweak. "

Evans says that Wal-Mart has a so-called customer trust center at the heart of Silicon Valley in Sunnyvale, Calif., And says there are 24-hour employees, alternating day at events such as Black Friday. The ultimate goal is to avoid any terrible things like Wal-Mart's mobile apps or website crashes in the mid-Black Pride rush. Evans says that Evans can pinpoint the situation and determine the best way to become a real store bottleneck for customers who can not log in or check out a network logistics issue

how walmart is trying to reinvent in store shopping to win black friday

. The Wal-Mart Customer Trust Center in Sunnyvale,
Photo: Walmart

"We try to get third-party applications out of the box." A software tool used by Walman's Engineering and Operations department, Evans "But because there are 4,700 physical stores and a large Web site, we add," We have to build our own toolset. "" It's not just scale, it's the rate we're experiencing in a short time. We must have this level of resilience. "

This all-encompassing infrastructure is intended to support the incremental in-store operation of Wall Street, which can compete with Amazon and other existing large retail stores. Increasingly, consumers are increasingly finding that a particular product Wal-Mart reported e-commerce sales increased 43% year-over-year in the e-commerce report last quarter

In some cases, consumers may be looking at a website , Shopify said that the "webrooming" process, which can be used inexpensively at other retailers' stores, is the standard showroom operations for about 70% of US consumers. In Black Friday, Wal-Mart's Web Many deals are available through the online store of sites and other retailers.

Wal-Mart is trying new things this year to provide consumers with a lot of shopping opportunities. You arrive at the Apple Store – officially called Checkout with me, and it was first launched in August as a pilot program for the Outdoor Lawn and Garden section in about 350 locations in the US, but Evans says that this feature works for all Walmart

Ultimately, a colleague who runs a special piece of software on a smartphone would like to have a customer who has only one or two items. Similar to the retail approach, but with full registrants and full registrations You can check out to reduce the lines and check out bottlenecks in large inde management alternatives more affordable alternative for self-checking system at least temporary staff, to the future-oriented environments such as the Amazon with less cash Number Go. (Wal-Mart is developing a retail version of its casual language, and Wal-Mart-owned Sam's Club has announced it plans to use its mobile app to open a cashier-free store in Texas, where customers check out.)

The Wal-Mart's item finder built into Evans' main mobile app makes it easy to see where the pin is physically stored for the Black Friday product. In addition, Walmart allows customers to return third-party products that are sold in physical stores at instead of processing the online refund process.

Wal-Mart hopes to improve store experience and encourage more customers to leave home and have a physical trip tonight as Wal-Mart opens its store. Black Friday and during the weekend. But Evans says this kind of preparation, new features, and infrastructure investment are strengthening the online and offline retail store consolidation strategy. Ultimately, the company 's success depends on the capabilities of its mobile applications and network infrastructure, from Wal – and grocery delivery to Wal – Mart pay – mobile billing services.

Grocery delivery, especially where more than half of Wal-Mart's sales come from grocery stores, is a particularly exciting learning experience for Wal-Mart and tells you how to handle vacation sales and other bulk purchases. Walmart has expanded its grocery delivery service from 1,000 stores to more than 2,000 in a year. It was possible because I invested a lot of money on technology. "It's the kind of sheep we speak," she says. "What really helps to understand customer behavior is complexity and size."

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