Walmart is taking direct aim at Amazon with a subscription program that the big-box retailer is reportedly launching in the U.S. later this month.
At US$99 a year, Walmart+ will give customers access to same-day delivery of groceries and general merchandise, discounts on fuel at Walmart gas stations, and early access to product deals, according to Recode. In comparison, Amazon Prime typically costs $119 a year and includes delivery, streaming and other features.
Walmart+ had been scheduled to launch earlier this year, but plans were put on hold because of COVID-19.Walmart offered no immediate comment Tuesday about the service or the scope of the launch.
Amazon launched its Prime loyalty program in 2005–nearly a generation ago–and now boosts more than 150 million members worldwide. Prime members tend to shop more often with Amazon than non-members, and the annual multi-day online shopping event known as Prime Day is one of the big events in U.S. retail.
Grocery could be the differentiator between the two subscription services. Amazon offers free delivery from its Whole Foods chain and through its Amazon Fresh service for Prime members, but Walmart has a stronger physical presence and lower prices. And, Walmart+ is launching at a time when many customers are holding a little tighter to their purse strings.