Walmart ramped up its grocery delivery service during the pandemic, and it paid off. Now, the retailer is putting more resources into that part of its business by hiring more than 3,000 more drivers to make deliveries.
Walmart’s InHome service is currently available to an estimated six million U.S. households. Once the expansion is completed, Walmart says 30 million households will be able to receive store-to-refrigerator grocery deliveries.
“Now you’ve got this ultimate convenience where you get home, the refrigerator is restocked and other items like video games, clothing, toiletries, and other non-perishables are on the countertop,” Tom Ward, senior vice president of last-mile delivery at Walmart, told CNBC.
There is no doubt that grocery delivery has been popular with consumers, but some posting reviews at ConsumerAffairs have suggested there are a few bugs in the system. Dave, of Atchison, Kan., said one of his recent orders never arrived but that he received a text informing him that it did.
“Contacted support via text and was told order was canceled and refunded,” Dave wrote in a ConsumerAffairs review. “Next day USPS delivers Campbells Chicken Soup then delivery driver brings toilet paper, tissues, ketchup, relish, gum, stuffing, chips and chocolate syrup... ALL other items missing.”
Susan, of Cape Canaveral, Fla., tells us she was very happy with the delivery service the first few times she used it. Lately, she says it has been unpredictable.
“Even with grocery delivery, they have started sending ordered items different days through the mail,” Susan wrote.
A bigger stake in the delivery business
Walmart stated that additional staffing may be able to help iron out those wrinkles. According to CNBC, the company’s investment is making it a major player in the delivery business, competing with the likes of DoorDash, Instacart, and Amazon Fresh.
Walmart will charge $19.95 a month, but there will be no additional fees. Amazon Fresh is included with a $12.99 a month Prime membership. A DoorDash subscription costs $9.99 per month but requires a minimum of $12 for restaurant orders.
Target makes deliveries through its subsidiary Shipt. A Shipt membership costs $99 a year and provides free deliveries for members. Non-members pay $9.99 per delivery.