Walmart’s Jet.com Moves in on Online Urban Shoppers

By Steve Drake

  • New York City is one of the top 5 markets for Black millennials

  • Jet.com is set to offer Nike as an anchor to attract more upscale shoppers

Are you an urban-dwelling millennial looking for an online grocery store, home decor and fashion experience? If so, Walmart’s Jet.com wants you to look there first. In order to more directly compete with the ever present, online shopping giant Amazon, Jet.com is set to offer Nike products, home furniture and décor items, as well as more delivery options to city and urban dwellers who make up the bulk of its shoppers. The program is set to begin in Jet.com’s top market, New York City, fall of 2018.

Why this Matters: This all raises an important question: How does this affect African American millennials? Considering New York City is one of the top 5 markets for Black millennials (by population) and with $162 billion in purchasing power overall, Black millennials will have a say in economic and financial decisions key media and popular brands are making to remain competitive on the online shopping scene.

With Amazon’s 175 fulfillment centers worldwide and fast-approaching 50% of all online retail spending in the U.S., Walmart is seeking to make a play for who comes in second. Amazon’s next, closest competitor is eBay at 6.6%, followed by Apple at 3.9% and Walmart 3.7%. Jet is looking to stand out by partnering with local stores and tailoring products based on customers’ shopping habits.

While offering 3-hour, same day delivery for groceries and having Nike as an anchor to attract a more upscale shopper, Jet is seeking to become more of a threat to Amazon. “We’re sort of positioning Jet to be more geared toward the affluent, higher income, urban millennial customer,” says Marc Lore, Jet’s founder and Walmart current head of U.S. e-commerce.

What’s Next: To expand beyond just its existing core shopping base of rural and suburban shoppers, Walmart and Jet have also teamed up to open a digital fulfillment center in the Bronx.

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