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What's going on?

Walmart was cool, calm, and collected last quarter, with some expectation-smashing results.

What does this mean?

While peers like Home Depot and Target had their ups and downs this week, Walmart strode through with confidence and that wasnt down to luck. Its massive grocery arm, the biggest in the US, played a huge part. And even though sales of nice-to-haves were unimpressive, cash-strapped shoppers were all over Walmarts own-brand foods opting for home-cooked meals over pricier dine-outs. All said, customers were both visiting stores more often and spending more too: in fact, the number of transactions swelled by 2.9% last quarter, and the average bill climbed by 3.4% to boot. All that momentum pushed same-store sales beyond forecasts, driving both revenue and earnings over target too. And to sweeten the deal, Walmart raised its annual profit outlook, sending investors into a tizzy.

Why should I care?

The bigger picture: Prime opportunity.
Walmarts secret weapon in the market-share battle is the Walmart+ membership. For under $100 a year, members enjoy discounts and perks like free food delivery on orders over $35. And that membership isnt just retaining customers: its making them spend more too. Ever since Walmart amplified its marketing efforts last year, the programs growth has skyrocketed. And with its novelty, theres ample room to expand potentially giving pricier services like Amazon Prime a run for their money.

Zooming out: Ad-vantage Walmart.
Walmarts pushing into other areas too, but not with a new gizmo or nibble this time: its actually advertising. After all, the firms got nearly 5,000 stores across the US, and about 90% of Americans live within 10 miles of one meaning that Walmart sees a massive daily influx of customers. Capitalizing on that, the retail giants planning to ramp up its in-store ad space sales. Think ads on screens, checkouts, and aisles, as well as radio spots and sample stations.

Originally posted as part of the Finimize daily email.

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