Walmart Canada Steps Up its Mobile Payments, Pickup Operations

October 29, 2018         By: Steven Anderson

It was welcome enough that we could use mobile payments systems at Walmart. The convenience and safety of mobile payments is welcome just about anywhere they go. However, there’s still often the issue of the last mile to address; buying things is convenient, actually laying hands on them less so. Issues of shipment and pickup can still be troublesome, but for 22 Walmart locations in Canada, it’s about to get a lot easier thanks to new mobile pickup points.

With this expansion, reports note, all Walmart Canada Grocery Pickup store locations will have the mobile pickup options by the end of 2019. Customers can place their orders via the Walmart Canada website or via the equivalent mobile app, then pick up said groceries later at the selected store.

Great start, and it gets better; Walmart will also start introducing the Pickup Tower system to the Canadian market starting early next year. With Pickup Towers, customers can place their order online and then, using a barcode on a digital receipt, scan that barcode with the Pickup Tower to collect their order.

Walmart Canada’s president and CEO Lee Tappenden noted “…We’re thrilled to offer the Mobile Check-in technology to customers, potentially shaving valuable minutes off their online grocery pickup experience. Early next year we’ll also trial Pickup Towers — another way we are using our stores to offer convenience and time saving options to our customers.”

The bad news here is that it might be lacking; Walmart Canada represents 411 stores, which means the 22 locations added on here represents just a hair over five percent of the total. While there may have been some before this addition, we’re still talking about a fairly slim quantity of new stores added, and potentially, overall in play. That’s not exactly good; even though Canada’s retail environment isn’t quite as  glutted as the United States’ is, there are still competitors in play and Walmart Canada must address these. Still, based on the sheer numbers of closures the country has seen over the last decade, this may well prove enough for Walmart Canada to continue to hold out.

Only time will tell just what impact Walmart Canada’s new mobile payments connection has, but it’s a safe bet that it will reap at least some benefit here.