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Walmart offers supply chain partners free access to data and metrics

Walmart Luminate
Walmart will offer a free version of its Walmart Luminate data platform to suppliers.

Select customer insights and operational metrics will be available at no cost to participating Walmart suppliers.

In 2021, Walmart launched its Walmart Luminate suite of data products for its supply chain partners. The platform provides a unified picture of category performance and consumer trends at scale.

Following the recent addition of self-recorded video clips from shoppers who participate in the Walmart Customer Spark Community to its Luminate options, Walmart is formally announcing the forthcoming launch of a Luminate Basic package free of cost to suppliers. At a high level, Basic subscribers will gain access to a subset of Walmart’s channel performance insights, including standard operational metrics.

[Read more: Walmart opens customer data to supply chain partners]

Charter subscribers will continue to receive the full suite of channel performance insights, in addition to shopper behavior and customer perception insights. Access to a dedicated account team and engineering support for API ingestion will still only be available to Charter subscribers.

Walmart suppliers that select the Charter Luminate subscription will also have access to the ongoing addition of new incremental data sets. For example, Walmart has added digital product transactability (i.e., insights regarding items added to cart and purchased via grocery pick-up and delivery) to the Luminate roadmap for the upcoming fiscal year.

According to Walmart, this latest Luminate move also underscores the modernization of the discount giant’s tech stack. The Walmart Global Tech division created the Luminate platform in-house by leveraging existing Walmart Global Tech platforms and Walmart enterprise assets. Within a few months, the Global Tech team developed an enhanced experience designsd to provide faster results for complex queries, collate real-time retail events, optimize insight visibility, and increase data security and governance.

“Shared access to Walmart Luminate with our suppliers has been a game changer,” said John Laney, senior VP, GMM of Center of Store Food at Walmart in a corporate blog post. “Improved visibility to shopper behavior, channel performance and customer perception empowers us to make better, more strategic data-driven decisions. We can optimize assortments, forecast inventory and analyze customer sentiment which helps us deliver a more enjoyable, more personalized experience for customers.”

“We are exploring new and innovative ways to embed Walmart Luminate insights into other areas of our business, Mark Hardy, head of Walmart Data Ventures, said in the blog post. “For example, we are working to directly integrate Walmart Luminate insights into existing merchandising tools to better facilitate data collaboration with suppliers. We are also piloting ways for actionable Walmart Luminate insights to be deployed, automated and scaled across Walmart Connect’s advertising ecosystem, and have seen positive results to-date.

Walmart Luminate Basic is expected to become available in 2023.

Walmart bolsters supply chain
Walmart is enhancing suppliers’ understanding of customer intent and category performance as it is also generally beefing up supply chain operations. In August 2022, the discount giant acquired Volt Systems, a technology company that develops solutions designed to provide suppliers with enhanced on-demand visibility into merchandising resources. 

In February 2022, Walmart built a tech platform that powers its last-mile delivery ecosystem. Agnostic to supply and demand, and built around its own marketplace, the platform uses automation and machine learning to turn a near-infinite number of factors into usable data. As it learns through artificial intelligence (AI), the platform is designed to improve.

Walmart is also opening fulfillment centers around the country. These centers are focused on storing millions of items that are picked, packed and shipped directly to customers as soon as the next day.

Based in Bentonville, Ark., Walmart operates more than 10,500 stores and clubs under 46 banners in 24 countries and e-commerce websites.

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