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Walmart Marketplace Growth: Opportunities for Online Sellers

Walmart Marketplace Growth: Opportunities for Online Sellers

Walmart continues to strengthen its online marketplace, now hosting over 1,000 sellers and 10 million products. This rapid expansion creates new opportunities for e-commerce entrepreneurs. In this in-depth guide, we’ll explore Walmart’s marketplace growth, how to get approved as a seller, product sourcing tips, marketing strategies, and more. By the end, you’ll have the knowledge to take advantage of Walmart’s booming third-party marketplace.

Let’s jump in!

The Rise of Walmart Marketplace

Launched in 2009, Walmart’s marketplace started slowly but has seen tremendous growth in recent years. Some key milestones include:

  • 2009: Marketplace launch with around 100 sellers.
  • 2016: Surpasses 5 million total listings from over 500 approved sellers.
  • Today: Over 1,000 approved sellers and 10 million+ SKUs (stock-keeping Keeping Units). Walmart adds 1 million new products each month!

This growth positions Walmart as a serious competitor to Amazon, the longtime e-commerce leader. Both sites now offer massive product selection through thriving third-party marketplaces.

Walmart’s strategy is to “round out its product assortment” by bringing in outside sellers. This brings more selection for customers while diversifying Walmart’s revenue streams. It’s a win-win model that’s clearly working well based on their marketplace metrics.

Becoming an Approved Walmart Seller

So how can you get in on the action? The approval process is selective, but there are clear steps one can take to increase their chances:

  • Proven track record: Walmart prefers sellers with experience on sites like Amazon and eBay. Have established storefronts showing reliable fulfillment and customer service.
  • In-demand products: Walmart seeks private label, electronics, apparel, home goods, and sporting goods, especially. Source products that fill existing gaps.
  • Application: Once invited, submit a thorough application explaining your business model, product selection, shipping methods, and more.
  • Onboarding: The setup process usually takes 2–4 weeks. Be prepared with high-quality product photos and comprehensive item listings.

With the right preparation, approval is certainly achievable. Reach out to companies like IPS for help polishing your seller profile, optimizing listings, and getting “Walmart ready.” Their marketplace experts can increase your chances of getting the green light.

Product Sourcing Tips for Walmart Sellers

Having the right product selection is crucial. When sourcing inventory, keep these best practices in mind:

  • Check current demand: Use tools like Walmart Marketplace Insights to identify top-selling categories and products to replicate or improve upon.
  • Private label opportunities: Develop your own brands by working with overseas manufacturers. This differentiates you from other sellers.
  • Seller-fulfilled inventory: Source enough stock to ship orders yourself for faster delivery vs. dropshipping. Aim for 2-3-week replenishment lead times.
  • Competitive pricing: Research similar items and undercut the buy box price when possible. Offer bundle discounts or “lightning deals” as well.
  • Safe, high-quality materials: Emphasize durability, non-toxic components, certifications, and warranties to build trust.

With the right sourcing approach, you’ll have to constantly restock your storefront for sustainable sales growth.

Marketing Your Store on Walmart

Getting found is half the battle. Consider these marketing tactics:

  • Organic search: Optimize your listings with target keywords, compelling titles and bullet points, and multiple high-resolution photos appropriately captioned.
  • Advertising: Walmart allows Promoted Listings Ads similar to Amazon Sponsored Ads. Experiment with tight targeting and competitive bids.
  • Social media: Run campaigns on Facebook and Instagram directing customers to your Walmart product pages. Include targeted hashtags like #WalmartFinds.
  • Email marketing: Collect customer emails and send promotional deals, new product launches, and service updates.
  • Press releases: Announce unique product launches or company milestones to various business listing and PR sites linked from your Walmart “About” page.
  • Affiliate program: Offer commissions for other sites linking customers directly to your storefront.

Consistency across these channels will raise brand awareness and convert more browsers into buyers. Continually test and refine your multi-channel marketing approach.

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Key Takeaways

To summarise some of the core points covered:

  • Walmart’s marketplace now hosts over 1,000 sellers and 10 million products, demonstrating huge potential scale for third-party entrepreneurs.
  • Focus on in-demand categories, proven track records, and thorough applications to increase your chances of approval as a Walmart seller.
  • Source products that fill gaps based on sales data insights and develop your own private label brands when possible.
  • Optimize listings, run promoted listing ads, and employ targeted social and email campaigns to efficiently market your store on Walmart’s platform.

Leveraging these best practices can help new and experienced sellers alike take full advantage of Walmart’s rapidly growing marketplace. Success requires dedication to product selection, operations optimization, and multi-channel marketing, but the rewards are certainly there for those who put in the effort.


Here are some common questions from potential Walmart sellers:

Q: What selling fees does Walmart charge?

A: Walmart’s referral fees typically range from 6-20%, depending on the product category. Electronics often sit around the 10-15% range.

Q: How do I list internationally restricted products on Walmart?

A: You’ll need to contact Walmart directly to discuss international product restrictions for your specific goods. They may require additional documentation.

Q: Can I use dropshipping fulfillment at Walmart?

While some sellers do attempt it, Walmart’s policies actually require inventory to be shipped within 4 business days from an approved warehouse. Direct fulfillment is preferred.

Q: What payment methods do customers use at Walmart?

Walmart accepts all major credit/debit cards, PayPal, and even cash/checks in some Walmart retail stores for online orders.

Q: How do I get featured on the Walmart homepage?

There is no guaranteed way, but selling top brands, maintaining a high review count and rating, and running successful promoted listing ads can help maximize your visibility.

Q: Can I sell the same products on Walmart as I do on Amazon?

A: Yes, as long as you have the rights to resell the products. Just be aware of any marketplace exclusivity agreements with manufacturers that may restrict multi-channel sales.

Q: What are the top products to sell on Walmart?

Based on sales data, some consistently strong categories include consumer electronics, home goods, toys, sporting goods, apparel and accessories, health and personal care items, and consumable grocery products.

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