Editor’s note: This blog post was updated in June 2022 for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
Walmart is synonymous with value. Since its founding, the retail giant has attracted consumers with a wide selection and “everyday low prices.”
It was even the first to popularize private label brands more than 30 years ago with generics for popular items from dog food to clothing. Since then, competitors like Amazon and Target have joined in with private label brands that boast low prices, as well as high quality and unique product concepts. In response, Walmart private labels now do more than attract bargain hunters. They build customer loyalty and increase profit.
As inflation drives more consumers to generic alternatives, Walmart is doubling down on its private labels to attract shoppers with exclusive brands and a more modern product mix.
What Are Walmart Private Label Products?
Walmart private label products are those the retailer manufactures or procures itself and sells under its own brand. Consumers are familiar with the long-running Walmart generic brand Great Value, but many others have emerged in recent years to keep up with the highly developed private brands of competitors like Target. Walmart now owns nearly 320 private label brands, including popular names such as:
- Sam’s Choice premium foods
- Equate pharmacy products
- Time and Tru misses clothing
- Wonder Nation children’s clothing
- Ol’ Roy dog food
- Parent’s Choice baby and toddler products
- Mainstays home goods
In addition to launching its own private labels, Walmart’s private label strategy also involves strategic acquisitions of existing entities such as Jet.com, Modcloth, Bonobos and the popular online furniture retailer Hayneedle.
Since the pandemic, Walmart.com has become the second-largest online marketplace in the world behind Amazon. According to Walmart, “Brand recognition keeps customers coming back for more…because they have always shopped at Walmart (32%) and they are familiar with Walmart’s products and stores (33%).” Walmart receives nearly 100 million unique monthly visitors — 99% of which make at least one online purchase per month and 20% who make at least one online purchase per day.
Why Are Walmart Private Labels Good for Walmart?
Walmart works with and sells the largest retail brands in the world. But marketing and selling its own private label products is still extremely valuable. Here’s why:
1. Private labels are becoming more popular.
Consumers are looking beyond grocery when it comes to buying private labels and warming to other categories like home decor, apparel and beauty. eMarketer reports that 89% of US adults say they switched from a national label mainly because the store brand offered better value.
In the past, generic brands kept prices low with simple packaging and little to no marketing. But consumers no longer view store brands as cheap knockoffs. Today, they seek out private labels like Amazon’s Pinzon or Target’s Cat and Jack for exclusive styles and higher likelihood of in-stock products. Walmart has joined the trendy generics movement with brands like MoDRN home decor and Free Assembly children’s clothing.
eMarketer says this is due to three factors:
- Consumers care less about brands and more about product quality and utility.
- Private labels are demonstrating higher quality on par with national brands.
- Consumers are prioritizing total product value to stretch their dollars further.
2. Private brands increase profit margins.
Private label brands help retailers achieve higher profit margins by allowing them to control price, product costs and packaging/marketing.
When retailers purchase directly from manufacturers or suppliers, they secure the lowest bulk cost and brand the products themselves. This achieves much higher profit margins than purchasing products from another retailer or brand at a markup.
Plus, private label products aren’t sold anywhere but through the retailer that owns them, meaning the seller can keep more of its profit. This also means consumers can’t price compare for the same products across multiple sites.
3. Private labels allow for more creative freedom.
Private labels give Walmart control over branding and packaging for any of its owned products. It can procure or manufacture products with differentiated product qualities (e.g., unique bedding or clothing styles) to match Walmart ethos and consumer preferences.
Private labels have become a way for retailers to stand out among national brands. In fact, 33% of consumers who switched to a private label brand said they were drawn
by the packaging/display, and 25.8% didn’t even realize they were buying a private label at first.
It’s this differentiation that creates loyalty with consumers who now intentionally seek out private label brands.
Start Selling Your Products on Walmart.com
With millions of visitors each day and resources for new sellers, Walmart makes it easy for you to sell your own product around the world.
The Walmart Marketplace is now home to more than 150,000 sellers. More importantly, an estimated 100 million unique visitors shop the site each month. It’s a no brainer to sell on one of the world’s largest marketplaces. Here’s how:
- Do your research
Select a product that’s in high demand and has low competition and production costs. Need help choosing? Try Walmart’s Seller Center Growth Opportunities tool.
- Locate a supplier
Look for reputable suppliers and compare each one on price, quality and service. Then, negotiate a contract including bulk order details and terms that make sense for your business.
- Request to sell on Walmart Marketplace
- Create a Walmart listing
Craft your Walmart product listing with a keyword-rich title, description, features and multiple images to boost search visibility. Remember to continually review your listings and optimize them based on reviews and competitor listings.
- Fulfill with Walmart Fulfillment Services (WFS)
You can choose from a number of fulfillment methods, but we recommend WFS. Walmart.com displays member listings with TwoDay Delivery and Fulfilled by Walmart tags to boost customer trust so you can win the Buy Box more frequently.
- Get selling
Start selling — but don’t let the journey end there. Continually track and optimize your listings and use sponsored ads to catch more attention.
ChannelAdvisor Helps Walmart Sellers Succeed
ChannelAdvisor is home to hundreds of experts who help brands launch and optimize their marketplace listings and presence. We help Walmart sellers:
- Manage and improve product content to comply with changing requirements
- Increase product visibility with tailored advertising strategies
- Compete with other sellers with automated repricing strategies and competitive intelligence
- Identify growth opportunities with powerful reporting and dashboard analytics
ChannelAdvisor was Walmart Marketplace’s first-ever launch partner. Today, we’re a preferred Walmart Advertiser partner, too. Sellers can save valuable time and resources using ChannelAdvisor’s powerful automation tools to manage their advertising campaigns in the same platform as their listings.
Need help getting started? Our Managed Services team of marketplace experts help you customize an action plan for launch and continuous growth.
If you’re not selling on Walmart yet, complete this form to start the process now. You’ll be contacted by a ChannelAdvisor Walmart expert who will help you complete the Walmart Marketplace Seller application and explain the next steps.