Study: 11% of U.S. shoppers have signed up for Walmart+

First published on RETAIL DIVE OCT.07

Dive Brief:

  • Eleven percent of Americans subscribed to the new Walmart+ service within the first two weeks of its launch, according to new survey findings from research platform Piplsay. The survey was conducted nationally and garnered more than 20,000 responses.

  • More than half of those surveyed (53%) have heard of the service, and 27% may subscribe soon. About 47% said they have not heard of Walmart+.

  • Based on consumer responses, Amazon Prime may face competition — 45% of Walmart+ subscribers also have Prime subscriptions, according to the survey, and 19% said they migrated to Walmart+ from Prime. About 38% say they think Walmart+ is a threat to Prime.

Dive Insight: After months of delays for the rollout of the new membership service, Walmart+ seems to have caught the attention of millions of U.S. shoppers. The service was originally set to go live back in the spring, then July, and finally launched at the beginning of September. Walmart has put considerable promotional muscle behind the new program, particularly as close competitor Amazon is gearing up for Prime Day this month. Still, the Piplsay findings are surprising, as they indicate Walmart has convinced many shoppers to quickly shell out $98 for its new service during widespread economic uncertainty. Walmart+ covers both grocery and non-grocery items. Survey respondents report looking forward to a variety of features, including unlimited free delivery on orders over $35, one-hour and same-day delivery windows and mobile scan-and-go. The $98 price point compared to Prime's $119 also resonates with about 5% of those surveyed.  The benefits to shoppers could widen Walmart's lead in online grocery. A recent study from TABS Analytics found Walmart has overtaken Amazon as the top online food retailer, with Walmart accounting for about 30% of online grocery transactions and Amazon dropping to 27% (though Amazon has disputed the findings). Prior to the launch of Walmart+, Fortune found that one in three Prime members were likely to subscribe to it. Aside from Piplsay's findings, there have not yet been other surveys or reports on Walmart+ subscriptions since it began, but that is likely to change over time.  Walmart has been improving its digital presence beyond the new subscription program. It's working to add digitally driven features to its stores like more contactless payment kiosks and in-store signage that pushes customers to download its app. Walmart also merged its regular retail app with its grocery app earlier this year.

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