Last updated: Walmart bullish on small stores

Walmart bullish on small stores

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The retailer known best for its super-size stores is downsizing: Walmart plans to add 155 new locations that are smaller than 60,000-square-feet.

As consumers have learned that big-box stores can mean savings, they have also come to understand that it can mean long lines, membership fees, and more elements that diminish the savings.

Sizing down stores to size up profits

 

The reasoning behind the incredible shrinking big-box store? Competition, says Bill Simon, head of Walmart’s U.S. division.

“They compete really well against multiple channels,” he said, during an industry conference call, Forbes reports. The specific competitors he called out included Walgreens and Dollar General, as well as more traditional supermarkets.

Creating a flexibility for markets they can enter by planning smaller stores opens a world of possibility for WalMart and their shoppers.

As consumers are embracing shopping via the web, size is relative. As Simon observes, existing Neighborhood Markets are all enabled with e-commerce and Site-To-Store capabilities, “So you have that endless aisle that we can offer that others might not be able to offer.”

The company is no stranger to smaller stores. In 1998, it launched Neighborhood Markets, in an effort to make headway in towns that weren’t large enough to support a traditional Walmart or Walmart Superstore.

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