Google & Walmart team up on voice ordering to take on Amazon’s Alexa
Starting in September, Walmart customers will be able to use Google Home devices to place orders using only their voice; quite similar to Amazon’s Alexa via Echo devices. In order to accomplish this, the nationwide retailer will make their products available on Google Express.
Similar to placing voice orders with Alexa, Google Home devices will reference your ordering history when purchasing items. Basically, if you placed an order for a 12-pack of Bounty paper towels a month ago, Google Home will be able to repeat that order. It’s unclear if items can be placed on subscription though; ideal for repeat ordering.
To use this service, customers will have to link their accounts to Google. Walmart estimates “hundreds of thousands” of products will be available through Google Express. However, that’s a small fraction of the retailers entire catalog of more than 65 million items.
Obviously, Walmart is attempting to grab a larger piece of the online shopping ecosystem. While Walmart is frequently the 1st alternative search option after people look for an item on Amazon, Walmart lags behind in average customer orders. The average Amazon customer spends over $150 each month on Amazon while the average Walmart customer only spends a bit over $25.
Besides Google Home devices, anyone with an Android smartphone will be able to use Google’s voice assistant to place voice orders as well. In addition, Google has started offering free delivery on Google Express as long as your order is above each retailers’s minimum purchase when checking out. Shipping speed on Google Express is usually one to three business days.