Is walmart getting the customer it always wanted?

Walmart has risen above its rivals during the COVID-19 pandemic, at least so far. Sales in the first quarter soared: Total revenue was up 8.6%, or nearly $11 billion, to reach $134.6 billion, U.S. comparable sales were up 10% and U.S. e-commerce rose a whopping 74%. The retail giant has spent the last few years gobbling up e-commerce pure-plays from Jet to Modcloth (winding down the former, selling off the latter and mum about most of the others), and has told Retail Dive that was an effort to appeal to new customers. But it has been the pandemic, rather than those attempts, that seems to have attracted consumers that may not have previously thought to shop there. “During the pandemic, customer loyalty went out of the window as consumers shopped around much more …in order to find the supplies they needed,” GlobalData Retail Managing Director Neil Saunders told Retail Dive in an email. “This was very beneficial to Walmart because, as the largest grocer with a massive footprint, it became a destination for all kinds of shoppers. This included many people who don’t usually visit the store much for groceries.” Read more at Retail Dive.