Walmart is going head to head with Amazon by offering “Black Friday deals” on July 15, shortly after Amazon declared their own “Prime Day.”
Last week, Amazon, the behemoth online e-tailer, announced that it would slash prices on many items on Wednesday, July 15, just as they do on Black Friday, the shopping day renowned for its steep post-Thanksgiving discounts.
Called “Prime Day,” the day before Amazon turns 20 years old, the company promised that its site would be “filled with more deals than Black Friday.” Sales on Prime Day will occur as often as every 10 minutes.
If this sounds too good to be true, in a way it is. The sale is exclusive to Amazon Prime members, who pay a $99-a-year fee for free select ebooks, unlimited music streaming and, above all, free two-day shipping. Still, to capture more customers on Prime Day, Amazon will also offer a free 30-day Amazon Prime trial to non-members.
What Amazon didn’t predict was that its competitor, Walmart, would also have a day of discounts on its website on the same day as Amazon’s Prime Day. That’s not a coincidence.
Fernando Madeira, president and CEO of Walmart.com, announced its online sale date on a blog post today that claims it will offer “thousands of great deals” and “special atomic deals.”
Unlike Amazon, though, after July 15, sales will continue for the next 90 days on Walmart.com.
Walmart is banking on beating Amazon’s Prime Day by slashing its free shipping rate when customers spend $50 dollars or more to $35, matching Amazon’s minimum purchase amount for free shipping. The $35 free shipping minimum will remain in effect on Walmart.com for at least 30 days.
Walmart attacked rival Amazon with a banner flashing on its site that read: “No Admission Fee. You shouldn’t have to pay $100 to get great deals.” Madeira said:
“The idea of asking customers to pay extra in order to save money just doesn’t add up to us.”
Walmart drew praise when it said its sales will be for everyone, not just for those who pay for a subscription service.
Amazon has since fired back at Walmart’s comments — Greg Greeley, the vice president of Amazon Prime, said in a statement:
“We’ve heard some retailers are charging higher prices for items in their physical stores than they do for the same items online. The idea of charging your in-store customers more than your online customers doesn’t add up for us, but it’s a good reminder that you’re usually better off shopping online.”
Neither company has revealed what would be on sale and for how much, so the war on pricing that day is yet to be won.