Walmart’s Jet.com revamps its shopping experience, announces Nike partnership
Jet.com, an e-commerce shopping site that Walmart Inc. acquired in 2016 for $3.3 billion, is launching a new shopping experience tailored to specific needs of urban areas, starting with New York City, where the site has a new fulfillment center that will be completed this fall.
The revamp aims to provide more personalization, with item recommendations and services that are relevant to the city-dwelling customer’s life. The key is “understanding customer intent” and providing a “contextual search” that differs between whether you’re looking to buy a grocery item again or are looking for inspiration for an apparel purchase.
“This is just the beginning of how we want to build and reposition Jet,” Simon Belsham, president of Jet, told MarketWatch. The company plans to expand the effort to other major cities.
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“We’re starting in New York City, where we started the business,” said Belsham. Among other things, the site will sell local brands and beers.
“The big premise is to make lives better for people who live in cities,” he said.
Jet will also offer three-hour grocery delivery, and customers who use Apple Inc.’s iOS will have access to voice-enabled services that will help customers with things like making shopping lists.
Jet is focused on reaching urban customers, particularly millennials, a group that has proven difficult for Walmart WMT, -0.84% to reach.
Walmart unveiled a revamped e-commerce site in April.
In May, Jet announced that it was adding Apple AAPL, +2.29% products to its lineup. In October, Jet will launch a curated assortment of Nike Inc. NKE, +0.48% apparel and shoes for men, women and children. The assortment will include the latest merchandise, according to Chief Customer Officer David Echegoyen, with both the Nike and Converse brands.
Both executives say that Apple and Nike specialize in providing a top-notch customer experience, a goal for the revamped Jet.
Nike recently sparked a firestorm of controversy by choosing former NFL quarterback and activist Colin Kaepernick as its spokesperson. After shares slid initially, Nike stock rebounded with online sales jumping 31% and an analyst upgrade based on resolution of issues that pre-date the current backlash.
See: Nike’s online sales jumped 31% after company unveiled Kaepernick campaign, data show
Also: Nike upgraded in face of Colin Kaepernick advertising controversy
Belsham said Jet’s own marketing campaign will emphasize the site’s focus on “humanizing” the online shopping experience.
Walmart shares have gained 19.2% in the past 12 months, but have fallen 3.6% for the year to date. The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.53% is up 5.7% in 2018.
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