- As the busiest shopping season of the year approaches, Walmart announced on Monday that it is holding three separate sales events in November and it is giving its Walmart+ members early online access to the deals.
- For the second annual savings event, called "Black Friday Deals for Days," members will have the chance to shop for deals four hours earlier than the scheduled start of all three events, Walmart announced.
- The first event starts online on Nov. 3 and continues in stores Nov. 5; the second starts online on Nov. 10 and continues in stores Nov. 12; and, though no dates were announced for the third event, the retailer said it will feature the "biggest, best savings of the season," per the announcement.
Unlike other players in the industry who've announced early deals in October in an attempt to convince consumers to shop sooner, Walmart hasn't. Instead, it is leveraging Black Friday to boost membership by upping its perks.
Just five months after the retailer launched Walmart+, data indicated that it accumulated between 7.4 million and 8.2 million members, according to a report from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners earlier this year. By September, Deutsche Bank estimated that number grew to 32 million.
Target held a three-day sales event last week and unveiled a price match guarantee feature between Oct. 10 to Dec. 24. Best Buy and Amazon have also pushed early holiday deals to ensure goods arrive into customers' hands on time for Christmas.
Retailers last year rolled out holiday deals earlier than in years past as a way to limit Black Friday crowds in stores. While vaccines have helped restore some confidence in shopping in store, those early deals are returning, but this time to address the supply chain issues, labor shortages and inventory constraints that have hampered retailers.
Though Walmart's sales event comes later than its peers, it still signals a shift away from the pre-pandemic mindset around Black Friday. The mass merchant's event starts around the same time as last year, but said there are deals currently available on Walmart.com.
"The team has worked hard to prepare for another outstanding holiday season, and no matter how or where our customers choose to shop – from the shelf in a store, ordering online and picking it up curbside or having it delivered to their front door – they can depend on us for a safe and convenient shopping experience," Scott McCall, executive vice president and chief merchandising officer for Walmart U.S., said in a statement.