Walmart has made a series of organizational changes and announcements in recent months. In late February, the company merged its buyer teams on the store and online side to decrease conflicts over the pricing of products online and in-store. It struck deals with secondhand apparel and accessories site ThredUp in May and with Shopify in June to expand the assortment of goods and add new brands to its website.
Walmart is also expected to launch a subscription-based service called Walmart+ to better compete with Amazon Prime. The retailer’s e-commerce sales in the U.S. shot up by 74 per cent in the first quarter, which ended April 30.
In recent months, the big-box retailer has hired more than 400,000 employees for stores and fulfillment centers to help stock shelves and keep up with demand. With the larger workforce, labor costs have risen. Walmart announced three rounds of special bonuses that have totaled $1.1 billion.