MWC

Walmart joins forces with Google to take on Amazon's Alexa voice shopping

Tyrone Stewart

Google Home WalmartWalmart is going toe-to-toe with Amazon on voice ordering after partnering with Google to enable the US retailer’s customers to buy goods through Assistant on their Google Home devices.

Walmart joins the likes of Costco and Target on Google Express, which enables shoppers to shop at popular stores through its app, website, or by voice through Assistant. Walmart will, however, become the first retailer to let existing customers link their accounts with Google to receive personalised results based on their purchase history. Amazon’s retail rival will make its way to Express from late-September.

“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 US eCommerce, in a blog post. “That’s why we decided to deeply integrate our Easy Reorder feature into Google Express. This will enable us to deliver highly personalised shopping recommendations based on customers’ previous purchases, including those made in Walmart stores and on Walmart.com. To take advantage of this personalisation, customers only need to link their Walmart account to Google Express.

“And, this is just the beginning. Next year, we will also leverage our 4,700 US stores and our fulfilment network to create customer experiences that don’t currently exist within voice shopping anywhere else, including choosing to pick up an order in store (often for a discount) or using voice shopping to purchase fresh groceries across the country.”

On top of the arrival of Walmart on Express, Google now offers free delivery through its shopping platform – as long as the order is above each store’s minimum. Customers don’t need to sign up for anything to enjoy free delivery, just order as normal and wait for their delivery within one to three days.