Walmart just launched a premium online equipment store
Your next high-end tent, headlamp, or puffy coat could be from Walmart. On Monday, the retail conglomerate added a new hardware store on its website, selling everything from clothing and camping gear to climbing harnesses and crampons. No, Walmart, known for its inexpensive product offerings, does not make private label equipment in an attempt to undermine established outdoor businesses, like they have with organic food. He sells full-price gear from industry stalwarts Black Diamond, Deuter, Therm-a-Rest, Pacsafe, and Eddie Bauer.
Premium Outdoor Store is a collaboration between Walmart and Moosejaw, the online equipment retailer that Walmart acquired for $ 51 million in 2017. Moosejaw is organizing the equipment that Walmart sells on its new platform, some of which are already available on Moosejaw.com, from other other brands that Moosejaw does not sell. to sell. The goal is to offer “a whole new assortment of outdoor specialties that was not available to Walmart customers in the past,” wrote Eoin Comerford, CEO of Moosejaw and general manager of e-commerce for the division. outdoor from Walmart, in an earlier blog post. today. Walmart has been selling camping gear for years, but is known for its inexpensive entry-level products.
The managers of Premium Outdoor Shop are aware of this reputation and are making efforts to ensure that the new platform sends a different message. “We pay special attention to maintaining the look and feel of each brand,” says Jaeme Laczkowski, director of corporate communications at Walmart. To do this, Walmart relies heavily on Moosejaw’s expertise and strong business relationships to ensure products are accurately described and represented online.
Over time, Comerford hopes to increase Walmart’s outdoor offerings by forming partnerships with specialty brick-and-mortar retail stores, which will be able to sell inventory through Walmart’s site, similar to the model Amazon uses to. its retail platform. For competing online retailers like REI and Backcountry.com, Walmart’s new interest in high-end equipment could have ramifications as the big-box online retailer siphons off sales. For brick-and-mortar stores that make up for weaker foot traffic by selling inventory through Walmart, the platform could be a blessing, but it could be a blow to those who choose not to register, as it brings more. sales of hardware online and away from the physical retail environment.
Does that mean Moosejaw itself could be on the verge of extinction? Not yet. Comerford says the new platform is a win-win solution, using Moosejaw’s expertise to enhance the Walmart shopping experience while using Walmart’s huge audience to create brand recognition for Moosejaw and send more customers at its destination. “We’re still the same Moosejaw we were before,” Comerford says. “Just supercharged by investment and scale. ”