Walmart's 3P Seller Program

August 15, 2023
Walmart's 3P Seller Program

In the fast-paced world of e-commerce, giants like Amazon and eBay have long been dominating the scene, especially regarding auto parts and accessories. But in recent years, Walmart has also stepped up to the plate to take its spot in the world's fastest-growing eCommerce category.

From 2016 to the end of 2021 Walmart Marketplace experienced remarkable growth in third-party sellers, witnessing a staggering increase from under 10,000 to over 130,000. By joining the program, sellers gain access to Walmart's vast customer base and benefit from its established brand reputation.

So, what is Walmart’s 3P Seller Program?

The 3P Seller Program, or third-party seller program, allows businesses, big and small, to list their products on Walmart's website alongside the retail giant's inventory. Essentially, it allows these third-party sellers to tap into Walmart's immense customer base, giving them exposure that would be impossible to achieve independently. This program functions similarly to Amazon's third-party marketplace but has unique advantages and opportunities.

Why Choose Walmart 3P Seller Program?

There are many compelling reasons why an increasing number of sellers opt for Walmart's 3P seller programs, making it a highly sought-after platform for businesses of all sizes.

  1. Expansive Customer Base

Did you know that Walmart estimates that approximately 220 million customers visit its website weekly, taking advantage of its vast network of over 10,000 stores and clubs across two dozen countries worldwide? With this growth, Walmart boasts a massive and diverse customer base, both online and offline.

By joining the 3P seller program, businesses gain instant access to millions of potential customers, providing an unparalleled opportunity to increase sales and expand their reach.

  1. Brand Recognition and Trust

Partnering with Walmart lends sellers a significant boost in credibility and brand trust. Walmart's reputation as a reliable and reputable retail giant translates into increased customer confidence in the products listed on its platform.

  1. Reduced Competition

Unlike other online marketplaces, Walmart's 3P seller program offers a less saturated environment, especially in certain niches like automotive. This reduced competition gives sellers better visibility and a chance to stand out.

  1. Ease of Onboarding and Management

Walmart has significantly improved its seller onboarding process, making it easier for new sellers to set up online stores. The platform's user-friendly interface and seller tools simplify inventory management and order processing.

  1. Diversified Sales Channels

For sellers already established on other platforms, joining Walmart's 3P seller program offers an opportunity to diversify their sales channels. Relying on multiple platforms reduces dependence on a single source of income and provides better resilience to market fluctuations.

  1. Walmart Fulfillment Services

Walmart offers fulfillment services, enabling sellers to store their products in Walmart's fulfillment centers. This option streamlines the order fulfillment process, providing access to Walmart's efficient shipping services and potentially improving customer satisfaction.

Challenges with Walmart’s 3P Seller Program

While Walmart's 3P seller program offers numerous benefits, it also comes with some drawbacks that sellers should be aware of. These include;

  1. Strict Application Process

Walmart maintains strict criteria for sellers to ensure quality and prevent fraudulent activities. Meeting their requirements can be time-consuming and may require significant documentation.

  1. Limited Product Categories

Walmart's 3P Seller Program focuses more on specific product categories; not all products are eligible for listing. Some niche sellers may find that their products do not align with Walmart's offerings.

  1. Competing with Walmart's Retail Inventory

 As a third-party seller, you'll be competing with Walmart's inventory, which could lead to pricing and product placement conflicts.

  1. Limited International Presence

Walmart's online marketplace primarily focuses on the United States, which may not be suitable for sellers targeting international markets.

  1. Fitment complications

Compared to Amazon & eBay, Walmart is relatively new to offering buys the capability to verify fitment (Year/Make/Model) on their vehicle. While this program was rolled out in 2021, it hasn’t been smooth. Many sellers and buyers continue to report issues that range from incorrect and missing technical details, lack of clarity in result sets, and broken backend output resulting in confusing experience flows.

*see more details in this blog by Eric Powel, designer for eBay motors.

Key Considerations for Auto Parts Sellers

  1. Research and Prepare

Auto parts sellers should thoroughly research Walmart's 3P seller program and its requirements to prepare all necessary documentation and meet the application criteria.

  1. Fulfillment Strategies

Evaluate whether utilizing Walmart's fulfillment services aligns with your auto parts business model, and assess how it might impact delivery times and customer satisfaction.

  1. Marketing and Promotion

 Auto parts sellers should plan marketing and promotion strategies to stand out among competitors and attract Walmart's online shoppers.

  1. Monitor Pricing and Profitability

Consider the impact of fees and commissions on the pricing of auto parts. Striking the right balance between competitive pricing and profitability is crucial.

Final Thoughts

In a world dominated by e-commerce giants, the Walmart 3P Seller Program emerges as a beacon of hope for small businesses and entrepreneurs. The Walmart 3P Seller Program can be a game-changer for auto parts sellers seeking to expand their reach and grow their business. While it presents some challenges, the benefits of accessing Walmart's vast customer base and leveraging its established brand make it a compelling opportunity.



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