Last quarter the market focused on Walmart’s announcement that there had been a reduction in the growth of their online sales. But, things seem to have taken a turn for the better, as Walmart’s Q1 Earnings Report announced eCommerce sales are up 33% in the US. Here we look at the traffic and conversion data behind Walmart’s successful quarter, benchmarked against its rival, Amazon.
1. Number of Purchases Is Up
When an eCommerce transaction is completed, the customer sees some version of a “Thank you for your Purchase” page. In Q1 2018, the volume of completed purchases at walmart.com rose by 9% over Q1 2017 to 4.2M per month. The volume of completed purchases at amazon.com, though significantly higher, was flat for the same two quarters.
2. Walmart’s Conversion Rate Is Up
The conversion rate takes the number of purchases and measures it against the number of visits to a site. The conversion rate for walmart.com in Q1 2018 was 4.5%, up slightly on Q1 2017 and considerably higher than 3.2% in Q1 2016. In the same three months in 2018, the conversion rate at amazon.com dropped by 0.2% relative to the previous year.
3. Reduced Growth Is Still Growth
By Q1 2018 growth at walmart.com was down to around 9% relative to the same quarter a year earlier. This follows the explosive growth of the first two quarters in 2017, fueled by Walmart’s Pickup Discount program which offered reduced pricing on “up to one million online-only items“. That program was itself a response to Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods.
4. What is Driving Walmart’s Growth?
While the conversion rate for walmart.com is gradually trending upward, it still lags significantly behind amazon.com. Delving deeper, we also captured conversion rate data for grocery.walmart.com based on completed purchases specifically within this subdomain. Holding steady at around 20% conversion, it seems clear that online grocery shopping will continue to make a huge contribution to Walmart’s eCommerce strategy for the foreseeable future.
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