Walmart’s partnership with Uber in making home deliveries has been extended to additional cities in the United States including Tampa and Orlando in the state of Florida and Dallas in the state of Texas. Initially the partnership had been restricted to Phoenix, Arizona.
According to a spokesperson for Walmart, Anne Hatfield, in Dallas the orders will be filled at eight stores before the personal shoppers of the retail giant proceed to pack the groceries into bags. The service will only be available to those customers residing in Zip codes where home delivery is indicated as an option at checkout. If customers want same-day delivery, they must make the orders before one in the afternoon.
Walmart considers the delivery partnership it has with Uber a test as it continues collecting information and feedback from customers.
“We want to make sure that we know it’s working for customers,” said Hatfield.
With over 53 outlets that are equipped with the capacity to handle orders which customers make online and which they can pick at a curbside that is designated specifically for this purpose, Dallas-Fort Worth is the biggest online grocery market for Walmart. The world’s biggest retail firm will open two stores in Fort Worth and Anna later in the year.
Kroger also offers a similar service though it also has a home-delivery partnership with Instacart. Natural Grocers, Costco, Tom Thumb, Central Market and Whole Foods are the other local partners of Instacart in Dallas-Fort Worth.
In the recent past Walmart has been experimenting with various ways on how customers can shop for groceries and general merchandise online in its battle with Amazon. These experiments include the installation of huge orange towers which act like vending machines as they can dispense to customers small general merchandise orders that had been made online. And in New Jersey, Walmart is piloting a project where its store employees can make deliveries to customers on the way home after work if they want to earn an extra coin.
Being the biggest grocery retailer in the United States, Walmart enjoys an advantage over Amazon especially in the grocery business. And while Walmart has been bolstering its online presence Amazon has also been working on an offline strategy and most recently announced intention to acquire Whole Foods at a price of $13.7 billion. The online retail giant has already issued a bond and the proceeds will be used to finance the acquisition.