There was a time when Wal*Mart was the king of all retailers and made manufacturers reps run for cover. It seems that Wal*Mart’s best days may be behind it. Paying $3 billion for Jet.com is a huge blunder that’s going to come back and bite them in the ass.
Jet.com is not profitable yet and although their sales are increasing, they pale in comparison to Amazon.com. For some reason Wal*Mart felt the need to buy Jet.com, more for its technology, than for its business. Wal*Mart could have easily invested in people to build a better eCommerce site, but I guess good help is hard to find in Bentonville, Arkansas.
The other issue that nobody seems to be talking about is the “anti-Wal*Mart” customer(s). How many Jet.com customers going to leave the site when they learn it is owned and operated by Wal*Mart? My guess is a lot.
This is what happens when retailers run out of ideas and innovation. Macy’s is learning that the hard way announcing that they are closing 100 stores because consumers don’t have a reason to shop there.
What can retailers do?
1ne: Continuous measuring their eCommerce experience and upgrading where necessary.
2wo: Pay retail salespeople a good salary and invest in them with sales and product training.
3hree: Learn to embrace competition online to partner together.
4our: Understand that consumers have the power, not you.