Very few people would have thought that two global leaders in their respective fields would feel threatened by a single rival who is thundering towards their huge markets at great speed. That rival is Amazon, the world’s biggest e-retailer which dominates online shopping, aims to win a sizable chunk of customers from the world’s largest brick-and-mortar retailer, Walmart, and is posing a serious threat to Google’s dominance of the search market as more and more people start their web searches for products directly on Amazon instead of Google.
It has set alarm bells ringing ever more frequently in the Google and Walmart boardrooms, eventually bringing these two global giants together to tackle the common threat to their dominance.
Now Google will start offering Walmart products to people using Google Express mobile app and website. Hundreds of thousands of Walmart items can be purchased through Google Assistant, the AI-driven software assistant found in smartphones running Google’s Android software and Google Home devices. For the first time ever, Walmart, the world’s biggest retailer felt obliged to make its products available outside its own website, in the United States. Here’s how it works – first, customers need to associate their Walmart account to Google via a feature called Easy Reorder that helps organize the items that the customers will purchase online and in store by speaking to Google Home.
The two intimidated giants said their partnership is more about where online shopping is going in the future and less about how it is done today. Google Home, the voice-controlled speaker on Google will surely offer stiff competition to Amazon’s Echo and the future Walmart customers will reorder items they had purchased before, by speaking to Google Home. Walmart is also experimenting with new delivery methods with Google and in a year’s time, shoppers will be able to buy groceries and pick up voice orders on Walmart stores. Marc Lore, president and CEO of Walmart US ecommerce, said, “When it comes to voice shopping, we want to make it as easy as possible for our customers—that’s why it makes sense for us to team up with Google.”