Walmart Is Putting Thousands of These Items on Sale, CEO Says
Walmart's red rollback tags are an eye-catching signal to customers that a deal awaits. Rollbacks build on the low prices already offered by the store and can be seen across a wide variety of products at any given time. Fortunately for Walmart shoppers, these cost reductions continue to be an important focus of the company's sales strategy in 2022, and savings will be readily available at a time when many could use a price break.
During the company's earnings call on May 17, President and CEO of Walmart U.S., John Furner, stated that over 10,000 rollbacks are currently present in stores, specifically in the areas of seasonal products and general merchandise.
This includes price drops in apparel, which began earlier this year and have extended into the second quarter. Plus, items like kitchen appliances, furniture, luggage, sports equipment, home decor, and more are currently marked down on the Walmart website.
Similar rollbacks were put in place this time last year, focused heavily on summer items and products people needed as Covid regulations began to lift and they were reintroduced to the outside world. Inflation and higher food costs plagued consumers last year, continuing into 2022, and Walmart's rollbacks help to alleviate some of those pressures with price cuts on other essentials and non-grocery items.
However, this year, there is an additional motivation behind the increased volume of discounts.
Walmart's top leaders also divulged during the call that the company's Q1 profits fell below expectations this year, pointing to overstaffing, surging fuel costs, and higher inventory levels as the main causes. Inventory levels for general merchandise items rose about 33% this past quarter, as "the rate of inflation in food pulled more dollars away from GM", according to the company's CEO Doug McMillon. Plus, some merchandise arrived late and many seasonal items weren't selling due to cooler weather across the country.
The expanded rollbacks are a solution to clear out some of the excess inventory and boost sales, even if it's at a reduced profit margin, and the corporation's executive team said this change has already seen positive reactions from consumers.
"I feel really good about the rollbacks and the right presentations," Furner said on the call. "We see in stores–I've been in stores all over the country. The store is excited about the rollbacks and the customers are responding. The execution has been strong."
With these additional discounts in place, continually strong food sales, and recent upticks in purchases of both seasonal and higher-ticket products reported during the earnings call, Walmart's executives showed confidence in the company's ability to rebound its profits in the coming quarters.
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