Now Walmart Testing Same-Day Delivery
Retailer intensifies competition with Amazon
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Oct 10, 2012 11:18 AM CDT
In this May 16, 2011 photo, the Walmart logo is displayed on a store in Springfield, Ill.   (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

(Newser) – Walmart is going head-to-head with Amazon in yet another area: same-day delivery. The retailer has started testing it in several US cities, soon after Amazon started doing the same. Walmart has become increasingly concerned with the threat from Amazon, as its low prices and free two-day shipping for Prime members have convinced more and more customers to order everything from books to toilet paper online. But Walmart could have a serious edge when it comes to same-day delivery: It has more than 4,000 stores, which essentially act as distribution centers, while Amazon has less than 40 distribution centers in the US.

But analysts say same-day delivery, though coveted by retailers, may actually be too expensive and difficult to implement to actually reap worthwhile profits. "If you don’t care about losing a lot of money, sure, you can pull this off," one tells the New York Times. "The question is: Can you pull this off profitably? I’m not convinced." The problem is, same-day delivery may only be useful to those who live in big cities and don't own cars—the rest of the US likely finds it easier to drive to the store than to order before noon, pay $10, specify a four-hour window, and wait around for a delivery, as Walmart.com same-day shoppers must do.

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Showing 3 of 12 comments
Bulls-Eye
Oct 11, 2012 9:43 AM CDT
I am in love with Amazon Prime. Often, Amazon is cheaper than local stores and I get it delivered to my house in two days. With $4 gas, the less I drive to buy stuff the better. One has to be careful, because not everything on Amazon is competitively priced. But I can even get our favorite cereal delivered to the house cheaper than from any local grocery store, and that's not even counting the savings on gas. I doubt, however, if same-day delivery from Amazon or Walmart will be financially practical in the long run.
winterfairy
Oct 11, 2012 3:21 AM CDT
Home delivery is becoming a real boon to shut ins. The problem is, shut ins don't buy high margin items. I buy and order tons of routine items online and I don't mind waiting a week to get them. It's still better than making a hole in my day and having to remember.
Naked_Emperor
Oct 10, 2012 11:31 AM CDT
If you spend your day perusing Newser, you may never know that Romney has pulled ahead in the pulls. http://www.realclearpolitics.com/ but hey, walmart delivers, and that is obviously more important to some transcriber at newser.