Interview Synopsis

Walmart – Holiday Shopping & Apparel Segment

  • Public Equity
  • Consumer
  • North America

Household sentiment has been marred by the fear of a recession but consumer spending in 2022 has generally been strong. Initial holiday reads are positive but a mass retail industry expert expects a “holiday wash out”.

Holiday “wash out” in January expected among mass retailers

Although the outlook is positive through end-2022, January and February could tell a different story, a former director at Walmart Inc said. “Depending on where people’s quarters close, I do think January will be difficult.” Price-conscious consumers are still shopping around and tend to “flip-flop between Target or Walmart”, we heard.

The expert also questioned whether sales are up because of inflation or consumers are buying more. “That’s something interesting to think about when we consider what the results are from [the] holiday and how that relates to inflation.”

The Interview also revealed that Walmart dominated online searches for Black Friday discounts, surging 386% YoY, our expert said. Although this is a positive sign for the company, it must ensure it can capture those sales or understand why conversion did not occur, they added. “I think it’s super interesting that the searches for Walmart were higher than Amazon.”

We also heard that uneasiness regarding supply chain issues has prompted store visits and a pull forward in spending as consumers seek to ensure items can be acquired in time for gift-giving occasions.

On Walmart specifically, pricing and supply chain evolution will continue to be high on the agenda, with the specialist also highlighting the company’s recently launched drone serivice as a sign of its continued investment in e-commerce and delivery. 

The Interview also discussed supply chain inflation, demand trends across the apparel segment, and private label positioning.

Click here to access all the human insights in Third Bridge Forum’s Walmart – Holiday Shopping & Apparel Segment Positioning Interview.

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The information used in compiling this document has been obtained by Third Bridge from experts participating in Forum Interviews. Third Bridge does not warrant the accuracy of the information and has not independently verified it. It should not be regarded as a trade recommendation or form the basis of any investment decision.

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