Walmart Plus has been coming for a while, and now it's finally arriving on September 15. The massive retailer has officially announced the launch of its subscription service and it's ready to go head-to-head with Amazon Prime.
While Walmart Plus as a subscription service is new, what it's offering isn't an entirely unfamiliar concept for some Walmart shoppers. The service will offer unlimited free delivery on over 160,000 products, and they'll all be available with in-store prices and sometimes even same-day shipping.
The free delivery service was actually already available in the form of Walmart's "Delivery Unlimited" program, and Walmart will even convert existing Delivery Unlimited memberships into Walmart Plus memberships.
A brand new benefit of the Walmart Plus subscription will make in-person shopping more convenient. The comes into play with the Scan & Go feature, found inside the Walmart app. It will allow shoppers to use their mobile devices to scan products as they add them to their cart and pay using Walmart Pay. This means no more waiting in long checkout lines during busy periods.
Topping it off, Walmart Plus includes discounts on fuel with up to 5 cents off per gallon at Walmart, Murphy USA, and Murphy Express gas stations. Sam's Club stations will be joining that list in the future.
Walmart Plus will cost $98 for an annual subscription or $12.95 monthly. A 15-day trial will also be available, and we expect a lot of people to take advantage of that free trial in the lead up to Black Friday 2020 shopping.
Giving Amazon a run for our money
One of Amazon Prime's big draws is that you could always turn to it to find products that would ship within a couple days for free. That makes it easy to ignore shopping most other places. But, with Walmart stepping into the same space, Amazon's shipping supremacy may be at stake.
Walmart has considerable offerings, so many shoppers are likely to find what they're looking there. And, with Walmart's 4,700 stores, it's likely many customers will be able to get a product shipped quickly. More than half of those locations are able to offer same-day shipping.
While Amazon also has some same-day shipping options, Walmart still has an option that's even faster. In some cases, when customers who don't want to wait on shipping, they can just head over to the store and pick the item up themselves. Then they can use Scan & Go to make checkout quick, and they can save a bit on gas before heading home.
Walmart Plus doesn't compete completely with Amazon Prime, as it leaves out strong content offerings that would challenge Amazon's Prime Video, Prime Music, and Kindle. But, that may balance out with Walmart Plus's lower price. The $98 annual subscription undercuts Amazon's $119 annual fee, though both services cost nearly the same for monthly subscriptions.
Now we just need to see if Walmart will have an answer to Amazon Prime Day.
- Here's all we know about this year's Amazon Prime Day
- Walmart Black Friday 2020: what to expect
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Over the last several years, Mark has been tasked as a writer, an editor, and a manager, interacting with published content from all angles. He is intimately familiar with the editorial process from the inception of an article idea, through the iterative process, past publishing, and down the road into performance analysis.