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Walmart commits to installation services in a big way

Walmart is expanding one of its partnerships, a move that could give it a leg up on competitors, including Ikea, Amazon and Best Buy.

Through a partnership with home services provider Handy, the discount giant is giving its customers the option to purchase in-home installation and assembly services for televisions and furniture. The program is currently available for purchase in 25 Walmart stores in Atlanta, and will be available in 2,000 additional Walmart stores next month.

Here’s how it works: As a customer purchases furniture or a television in-store, they have the option to purchase an installation service provided by Handy. The customer can schedule an appointment from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., and a qualified local professional will arrive at the customer’s home to complete the service. Handy has a network of more than 80,000 independent professionals.

“Our program with Handy enables us to eliminate the friction of installation and assembly, and offer customers a convenient, delightful experience from start to finish,” Daniel Eckert, senior VP, Walmart Services and Digital Acceleration, Walmart U.S., said on the company’s website. “We know Handy’s services are going to be a big help to our busy customers.”

Other retailers also provide third-party installation partnerships. For example, Ikea debuted its TaskRabbit At-Home Assembly Service in a pilot in 2016. The company introduced the program online in select markets, and in six stores in the San Francisco and New York City area. The retailer said additional stores will add the service in 2018, including those in Los Angeles, Miami, Houston, Boston, Washington, D.C., and more.

Best Buy offers similar services through its Geek Squad. Amazon also features assembly services for merchandise including furniture, fitness equipment, and recreational items, including pool tables.
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