In its battle against Amazon.com, Walmart just made a major move.
The retailer said today it would team up with Google — beginning in late September — to offer thousands of its items for voice shopping via Google Assistant. It will be the largest number of items offered by a retailer through the platform.
Walmart will deliver personalized recommendations through Google and allow customers to easily reorder their favorite items.
“One of the primary use cases for voice shopping will be the ability to build a basket of previously purchased everyday essentials,” said Marc Lore, president and CEO of Walmart U.S. e-commerce. “That’s why we decided to deeply integrate our Easy Reorder feature into Google Express.”
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Walmart and Amazon’s head-to-head battle for retail dominance has been keeping the industry on the edge of its seat for nearly two years. With Walmart’s noisy purchase of Jet.com for $3.3 billion last year, countered by an even louder $13.7 billion Whole Foods acquisition by Amazon in June, the power players have held the world captive in anticipation of their next move.
“They’re both saying, ‘There should be two big retailers in the marketplace — one being Amazon and one being Walmart,’” explained Farla Efros, president of Chicago-based HRC Retail Advisory. “Walmart is buying up all these online companies to garner knowledge and to understand how to serve the customer from an online and e-commerce perspective. And Amazon is doing the same thing with its brick-and-mortar [expansion].”