Walmart to Share Scan Data
Walmart says it wants to better understand its customers. That’s why the company has reversed its position and agreed to share its scan data with outside research firms. The company has already reached a deal with Nielsen and is reported to be very close on a similar deal with SymphonyIRI.
Since Walmart first made the decision not to share its data, suppliers to the company have been able to see how well their products sold, but not competitors. Having this additional information is seen by many as critical to fully understanding the market.
“This is a very big deal, to know how these companies’ products are selling at Walmart,” Dave Kolpak, an analyst at Victory Capital Management, told Reuters.
One exception to the no data sharing rule at Walmart has been Sam’s Club. The division, which has participated in syndicated data services, is the one area of Walmart’s business that has achieved growth in the U.S. in recent years.
Cindy Davis, executive vice president for global customer insights for Walmart, is a former executive at Sam’s Club. She said in a statement that sharing data would help Walmart gain “deeper insights into customer purchasing — and unmet needs — both nationally and in key local markets.”
“We plan to share our point-of-sale information to help us identify category growth opportunities sooner and collaborate with our manufacturer partners to develop more impactful customer-driven programs going forward,” Ms. Davis added.
- Nielsen Signs US Cooperation Agreement With Walmart, World’s Largest Retailer – Nielsen Holdings N.V.
- Wal-Mart agrees to share data with Nielsen – The Associated Press/Google
- Wal-Mart to once again share U.S. store data – Reuters
- Wal-Mart to Resume Sharing Sales Data With Nielsen – The Wall Street Journal
Discussion Questions: Why do you think Walmart is making sales data available again to Nielsen and SymphonyIRI? What will data mean for consumer product manufacturers and other retailers?