retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Walmart said yesterday that its Walmart Connect "closed loop omnichannel media business" has signed a deal with Firework, described as "a leading video e-commerce solution," to offer "livestream and premium shoppable video content" on its digital properties.

Some context from the announcement:

"The move comes amid seismic changes in the retail industry, as exploding US e-commerce sales are expected to break the $1 trillion mark for the first time. Consumers who turned to online shopping during the pandemic have remained there, and live shopping trends that have taken Asian markets by storm are picking up steam in the states as consumers increasingly turn to short-form video to discover and research products in their omnichannel journey."

And, Walmart said:

"By partnering with Firework, Walmart Connect aims to bring shoppable, short-form, social-media-style videos to its own digital properties while also making them available to advertisers, creating a premium video commerce experience. By bringing product discovery and final transactions together under a single immersive experience, Walmart Connect is supporting the entire customer continuum … Firework has partnered with Walmart Connect to launch a live shopping experience in support of Walmart’s Mega Beauty Event with partners J&J, L’Oreal, P&G and Unilever. The event includes four livestreams, which took place from September 13th through 16th, and continues to leverage replays and shoppable videos for featured products."

Rich Lehrfeld, Walmart Connect’s SVP and GM, said in a prepared statement, "“Video and livestream commerce truly works when you put the customer at the center of the experience … Our partnership with Firework further underscores how Walmart Connect is committed to evolving our business and expanding our offerings to actively stay ahead of what advertisers need."

KC's View:

The evidence, anecdotal and otherwise, seems to suggest that these kinds of programs have the potential to be really successful with a percentage of the population that wants a more immersive and entertaining shopping experience.  Me, I'm in the percentage of the population - dwindling, I'm guessing, because we're dying off - that is tired of always being sold on something.