Will Walmart’s daily pickup hour for seniors cause operational challenges?
A wide variety of retailers, from Acme Markets to Whole Foods, have stepped up during the COVID-19 outbreak to offer designated hours during which senior citizens, those with underlying health conditions and first responders can shop apart from the general population.
Walmart, which has offered a “senior shopping event” every Tuesday since March 24, announced yesterday that it is going to do more for vulnerable shoppers and first responders by adding a daily pickup hour for them at select locations. Orders are picked up curbside and are contact-free. The retailer is initially offering the service at 2,400 locations across the U.S.
“Now more than ever, families are relying on our pickup service to help get quality, fresh groceries to their homes as safely as possible,” Tom Ward, senior vice president, customer product said in a statement. “These are extraordinary times, and we are constantly looking for ways we can help deliver that same peace of mind to all our customers, particularly those who are most at-risk.”
Walmart is reserving between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. local time for customers in this group. When they visit Walmart.com/grocery they will see an “At Risk Only” prompt that provides eligibility requirements. Customers within this group also have the option of reserving pickup slots during other hours offered by the retailer.
Those who are eligible can fill their carts on Walmart’s grocery site or by using the retailer’s app. A link to a map to see if the service is available locally displayed an error message when checked by RetailWire this morning. A check of pickup availability of any type in Linden, NJ found that all slots were filled between today and Monday, April 20.
- Walmart Reserves Daily Pickup Hour For Those Most At-Risk – Walmart
- Here’s a Complete List of Stores With Senior Hours During Coronavirus Pandemic – Parade
- Retailers act to protect seniors from coronavirus shopping chaos and contamination – RetailWire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: What strain will Walmart’s designated daily pickup hour for seniors, at-risk individuals and first responders put on its store-level and supply chain operations in the locations where it is available? Do you expect Walmart to expand the offer to all its locations?