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Walmart to test product locker system at stores

Walmart says it will test out a new locker system that lets shoppers buy goods online and pick them up in stores.


Walmart plans to test a locker system at some of its retail locations this summer, the company said today.

The system, unveiled at a press event at the company's Silicon Valley headquarters this morning (via Reuters), will let people purchase items online, then pick them up in stores -- enabling customers to skip lines and guaranteeing that an item is in stock.

Amazon began a similar practice last year, in an effort to sell goods to people with hard-to-ship-to addresses. By shipping it to a locker, there's also a potential to save on shipping costs, and get items sooner than if they were to go through a standard shipping carrier to a home or business address.

Walmart has 10,700 stores in 27 countries, and is the largest retailer in the world. The company did not elaborate on how many of its stores would get the lockers, or where those stores would be located. Online rival Amazon's strategy has been to put lockers in other companies' existing retail locations, including Staples, 7-11, and Radioshack, as well as coffee shops and shopping centers.