After the recent news from major retailer Target that they were moving out of Canada, spurred primarily by issues with their inventory management and rollout costs, competitor Walmart has announced plans to expand in an attempt to fill the vacuum. Walmart’s expansion plans come at a price tag of $340 million, with 29 new “supercenters” being constructed as well as a complementary expansion of ad-distribution and their ecommerce presence.
$35 Million to be spent on ecommerce developments
Along with the creation of new, massive brick and mortar locations, Walmart is allocating millions in order to develop an ecommerce support for their expansion.The Canadian Anti Spam Legislation that went into effect on July first of last year made it so that online marketers must observe much more stringent requirements when emailing customers, lest they face hefty fines. Walmart will have to implement the means to comply, which could partly explain the level of investment they are making on their digital front.
Walmart must avoid the issues that pulled Target out of Canada, particularly in their ecommerce operations
In a piece by Karen Von Hahn titled, “What Target’s fail says about Canadians”, she makes it clear that Target’s failure wasn’t because Canadians simply aren’t ready for the affordable fashions the company aimed to provide. She cites a Canadian tendency to shop for quality as part of their inherent mistrust of Target, and goes on to state: “We are extremely discerning. When we do spend, we want it to be on something good. Canadians have been relatively slow to embrace e-commerce, because we are still “touch and feel” shoppers.” Walmart, while it is currently performing well in Canada, must be careful not to display the wrong messages and attitude to their Canadian customers. In addition, in order for their ecommerce efforts to succeed, they must effectively convey as much information about a product as possible in order to coax buyers into trusting in the quality of their products.
Andrew Greissman is a digital content manager for WBR Digital. Andrew’s writing background spans genres and formats from poetry and magazine writing to website copy and press releases. When not writing, Andrew enjoys travel, good food and reading books.
Photo Credit: Walmart
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