Have you heard the news? The online shopping community is buzzing with speculation about a new potential game changer when it comes to buying your things online. There will soon be a new “Free Shipping” subscription service aimed at competing with Amazon Prime. Walmart has decided to make an attempt at edging out, or at least scooting over, Amazon Prime and its huge share of the online shopping market. Amazon Prime costs $99 per year and provides two day shipping and many other benefits. As many of you regular readers know, I love Prime and think it is worth every penny. When I heard the Walmart Free Shipping service was going to be offering something similar, I had to learn more.
The Walmart Free Shipping service is being held as somewhat of a secret. The only information Walmart has included on their website is the following:
Bestselling products – in Baby, Clothing, Electronics, Health & Beauty, and others.
Unlimited shipping – The more you use it, the more you save on shipping – all year long.
Fast delivery – 3-day shipping or less.
No one really knows too much about the Walmart Free Shipping service yet but what we do know is intriguing. The Walmart Free Shipping service will cost $50 per year, which is about half the price of an Amazon Prime membership. It will offer free shipping with delivery within three days of most orders being placed. The Walmart Free Shipping service will include around 1 million items, a small fraction of the 7 million items available online at Walmart.com. Still, 1 million items is a pretty big selection! I order so many things on Amazon simply because Prime is so convenient, I am sure that selection of 1 million items is sure to contain things I need and use every day. It is rumored that Walmart’s service will not include things like free video and music streaming, free digital books or photo storage. Those are all features included with Amazon Prime.
When I heard about the Walmart Free Shipping service the first thing I did was go look to see where I could sign up. The subscription service is not available quite yet. It will be available by invitation only at first to be tested by a select group of shoppers. Want to sign up to be one of the first to try it? You can sign up to be places on a wait list HERE. I’ve signed up, it isn’t a commitment just a request to be included in the initial offers.
Why would Walmart offer the Walmart Free Shipping service? Look again to Amazon. Amazon found that Prime members want to get the most of their subscription fee so they tend to increase purchases they make at Amazon after they sign up. That means they’re less likely to buy goods from other around town or online retailers and they spend more at Amazon. This is a good sign for online shoppers. Walmart wants our business and they are coming up with ways to get it. Hopefully the Walmart Free Shipping service will be just the first step in Walmart refreshing its approach to luring online shoppers in with good promotions and great deals.