Walmart unveils $98-a-year subscription service

Walmart on Tuesday unveiled a subscription service that will go toe-to-toe with Amazon Prime.The $98-a-year Walmart+ membership plan includes free shi...

Posted: Sep 1, 2020 2:48 PM

Walmart on Tuesday unveiled a subscription service that will go toe-to-toe with Amazon Prime.

The $98-a-year Walmart+ membership plan includes free shipping on items $35 and over, including same-day deliveries on certain items from stores, such as groceries. Members will also get 5-cent-per-gallon discounts on gasoline and the ability to scan items with the Walmart app while they shop in physical stores (and pay without waiting in a checkout line).

Walmart called the new Walmart+ service the "ultimate life hack." It will replace Delivery Unlimited, which cost the same amount but was limited to about a quarter of the 4,700 stores that will ship items to Walmart+ customers.

Although Walmart+ undercuts Amazon Prime by $21 a year, it lacks many of its rival's benefits. For example, Prime requires no minimum purchase to qualify for free shipping, and it includes a number of other perks, such as free streaming of music, TV shows and movies and unlimited photo storage. It also gives customers discounts at Whole Foods in addition to free two-hour grocery delivery.

So Walmart has some serious catching up to do. The company said it will add more features to its membership plan over time.

But the key attraction of Walmart+ may be its stores. About 90% of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart, according to the company. The fact that 2,700 of its stores will ship items on the same day may help it beat Amazon in delivery speeds in many areas, Walmart says.

Walmart+ will begin offering its service to customers September 15.

Walmart's stock rallied around 2% during early trading. The company's stock has jumped 16% this year heading into Tuesday

More customers are shopping online for groceries during the pandemic, and some analysts say the new membership program will help Walmart reach these shoppers. Groceries are Walmart's most important business, making up around 56% of annual sales.

However, consumers are "overloaded" with subscription options, including Amazon Prime, Netflix, and Spotify, and it's unclear whether they will be willing to pay for a new $98 one, Chuck Grom, analyst at Gordon Haskett Research Advisors, said in a note to clients Tuesday.

"The jury is still out on the ultimate potential of this new offering," he said.

Walmart last week said it has partnered with Microsoft to buy video app TikTok. Oliver Chen, analyst at Cowen, said in a report last week that Walmart could market the new service on the app to appeal to TikTok's younger user base.

CNN Business' Nathaniel Meyersohn contributed to this article.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 300913

Reported Deaths: 5332
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion41330845
Lake26364448
Allen17299290
Elkhart16665212
St. Joseph16319220
Hamilton12459164
Vanderburgh9428112
Tippecanoe826727
Porter791279
Johnson6139164
Hendricks5807154
Vigo574474
Monroe525247
Clark495374
Delaware4789103
Madison4760119
LaPorte446894
Kosciusko446139
Howard325575
Warrick316072
Floyd306177
Bartholomew303262
Wayne295261
Cass293431
Marshall289944
Grant258747
Noble246846
Hancock243749
Henry237136
Boone235154
Dubois230430
Dearborn208829
Jackson206033
Morgan200643
Knox178017
Gibson177022
Clinton174920
Shelby174554
Lawrence171646
DeKalb171229
Adams165219
Miami155114
Wabash153018
Daviess152243
Fayette145233
Steuben141113
Jasper138311
Harrison137624
LaGrange136629
Montgomery131226
Whitley129910
Ripley123714
Decatur123542
Huntington122310
Posey118913
Putnam118326
Wells118327
Randolph117819
White117421
Clay115621
Jefferson114214
Greene100253
Scott99818
Jay95012
Starke89221
Sullivan86615
Fulton81117
Perry80921
Jennings80514
Spencer8047
Fountain7378
Washington7176
Carroll66813
Franklin65925
Orange65728
Vermillion5832
Owen5816
Parke5416
Newton54012
Tipton53726
Rush5216
Blackford51211
Pike50218
Pulaski36810
Martin3485
Brown3263
Benton3251
Crawford2781
Union2621
Switzerland2473
Warren2352
Ohio2257
Unassigned0265

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 363304

Reported Deaths: 6020
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin49267665
Cuyahoga35214736
Hamilton29462371
Montgomery19636225
Butler14472144
Lucas14033409
Summit12962310
Stark8529197
Warren798975
Mahoning7068299
Lake662766
Lorain623697
Clermont563946
Delaware540335
Licking535875
Fairfield523763
Trumbull5159144
Greene510563
Clark501064
Allen460685
Marion457751
Wood4394107
Medina428654
Miami416465
Pickaway396448
Columbiana339597
Portage334471
Tuscarawas317557
Wayne314993
Richland306732
Mercer284737
Ross239259
Hancock232736
Muskingum231910
Auglaize223230
Putnam221449
Erie217165
Darke217058
Ashtabula215753
Geauga197351
Scioto193615
Union18658
Lawrence185436
Shelby184815
Athens18454
Seneca173118
Belmont158529
Madison156218
Sandusky152327
Preble148421
Huron147518
Defiance137921
Holmes137739
Logan123613
Knox122518
Fulton122025
Crawford119116
Ottawa118930
Washington116427
Clinton103414
Ashland102722
Williams10238
Jefferson10124
Highland99517
Henry98422
Brown9644
Champaign9345
Jackson90312
Van Wert8976
Fayette89217
Hardin86118
Morrow8552
Guernsey83313
Coshocton81413
Perry77012
Adams75012
Pike7261
Wyandot70516
Gallia70413
Paulding62710
Hocking61011
Noble59722
Carroll44310
Meigs37612
Monroe31021
Morgan2395
Vinton2105
Harrison1913
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Overcast
32° wxIcon
Hi: 41° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 32°
Angola
Overcast
30° wxIcon
Hi: 38° Lo: 36°
Feels Like: 24°
Huntington
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 30°
Decatur
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 34°
Van Wert
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 34°
Snow/Rain Showers Tuesday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events