“Just get it on Amazon” has become a mantra not only for millennials, but for all generations, especially when the e-commerce giant offers so many more options than any brick-and-mortar store. To aim for their own place in the online market, Google and Walmart have teamed up in an effort to compete with Amazon.
The newly formed duo stated that, starting later this month, Walmart products will be listed on Google’s own online shopping center: Google Express. Customers will be able to make voice-activated orders through their Google Home devices – a pod-shaped smart assistant that’s very similar to Amazon’s Alexa.
Both corporations see voice-activated ordering as the future of online shopping. Google has funneled enough money and research efforts into artificial intelligence and voice recognition that the online engine seemed an obvious choice for Walmart to partner with.
Customers will also be able to link their Walmart and Google accounts to personalize their online shopping experience in accordance to what you have been researching or have previously purchased. Just as YouTube recommends related videos and social media sites deliver targeted ads, linking these accounts will allow Google to “better predict” what customers want in the future, according to the New York Times.
In other words, if you’re ordering puppy food, the next recommended purchase would be something like doggy diapers or chew toys.
While Amazon champions online orders and quick delivery, Walmart’s in-person locations gives it a different sort of advantage. The retailer will offer shoppers discounts if they choose to pick up their orders in-store. Walmart has also loosely teamed up with Uber to make “deliveries in certain test markets,” according to Forbes.
The Walmart-Uber delivery system responds to Amazon’s recent purchase of Whole Foods, which emphasized the importance of grocery delivery service. It’s a very viable market: elderly people and car-less college students alike would benefit greatly from more grocery delivery options.
In general, this partnership aims to increase Walmart’s convenience factor and up awareness about Google Express, which has struggled to gain traction since its launch in 2013. And while Walmart is a taken-for-granted, go-to for lower-priced groceries, clothing and more, the retailer still has to compete with other superstores.
Costco and Target are actually among a handful of retail stores that have already partnered with Google Express, including Kohl’s, Walgreens and Ulta. However, the availability of Walmart inventory on Google Express is slated to be much higher.
While Google is far from an average “tech start-up,” it’s at the forefront of start-up culture and the ever-shifting tech landscape. Walmart, in comparison, may be seen as outdated, so the company’s tech-focused partnership is a refresher. It’s likely that more and more in-person stores will go digital and offer home delivery, ultimately revolutionizing one of our most basic everyday chores.
By Carina Vo