Walmart Delivers Special ‘Goodies’ to Customers’ Homes

Discussion
Nov 15, 2012

Part of the idea behind the @WalmartLabs "idea incubator" is to take Walmart in directions that the retailer’s management may not have thought of on their own. The latest brainstorm is Goodies Co., a monthly service that delivers to subscribers five to eight small samples of upscale food items not typically found on shelves in Walmart stores.

Each month, items are grouped by a theme such as "Easy Entertaining" in November. Items included in this month’s Goodies box include "wine biscuits, pumpkin soufflé mix, dark chocolate infused Quinoa bars, and white cheddar popcorn."

Being Walmart, price remains important. Members pay $7 a month including shipping and tax. The company is rolling the service out after beginning a test in July.

"We continue to experiment with new offerings to delight our customers and leave them with a smile," said Ravi Raj, vice president of products @WalmartLabs, in a statement. "With Goodies Co., subscribers have the pleasure of opening a box filled with delicious treats every month that they like or may never have tried before. Great value combined with a community of food lovers and the sheer surprise of what a box might hold makes Goodies Co. a compelling offering."

Expectations for the Goodies service were largely negative when RetailWire first wrote about it back in June. In fact, 69 percent of respondents to a poll on the site expected the service to be somewhat or very unsuccessful.


What benefits is @WalmartLabs bringing to Walmart? What are your thoughts on the new Goodies subscription service?

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7 Comments on "Walmart Delivers Special ‘Goodies’ to Customers’ Homes"


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Tom Redd
Guest
9 years 20 days ago

Goodies is a true value play at $7/month yet it turns on excitement, adventure, discovery “with premium flavors of the world that come to you.”

Walmart’s intentions here appear to be to identify food trends via this new mail order service as it morphs into a food social community. Suppliers can showcase (and pay for) their products in the Goodies shipments with potential for future customer orders and Walmart gets a pulse on food trends.

Kudos on the continued innovations from @WalmartLabs; time will tell how well Walmart brings learnings from Goodies to its assortment mix.

Lisa Bradner
Guest
Lisa Bradner
9 years 20 days ago

Somehow I missed the first round of discussions on this, but I actually think this is kind of interesting: it allows Walmart to experiment with subscription and household delivery: two things Amazon excels at and traditional bricks and mortar retailers need to understand. They were smart enough not to brand it “Walmart” and to set it up outside of the mother ship. even if it “fails” it will provide great learnings.

W. Frank Dell II, CMC
Guest
9 years 20 days ago

Sampling upscale items not currently and not likely to be stocked in the store seems foolish. If there is a feedback loop to help selection items to be stocked in the store, I see some value. If this is research for an upscale website there could be merit. The problem is, are the current Walmart customers going to buy from an upscale website?

Shep Hyken
Guest
9 years 20 days ago

Great way to get a product (food) into the hands — make that mouths — of customers to find out what is hot and what is not. Great way to conduct research. That said, I’m questioning why Walmart is sending items not typically found in their stores. Maybe this a way to find out what they should put in their stores. Maybe it is a way to attract a customer they don’t already have. The Walmart people are pretty darn smart, so I’m sure they have thought this out. I’d love to see their answers to these questions.

Lee Kent
Guest
9 years 20 days ago

Love the concept and all its potential. I question why they are not using products they sell in store!

Cathy Hotka
Guest
9 years 20 days ago

What a genius idea — to connect with more affluent customers, and identify Walmart as a source of fine food. This is a niche that Costco conquered, of course, so you have to wonder whether Walmart feels threatened by Costco.

Ronnie Perchik
Guest
Ronnie Perchik
9 years 19 days ago

Interesting touchpoint for brands with consumers. Based on the subscription model, consumers should be much more engaged, which is positive for the brands. But will a typical Walmart customer being willing to pay for samples?

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