Walmart launching online grocery pickup in Sioux Falls

By Jodi Schwan

Walmart is launching online grocery ordering and pickup with some high-tech twists in two of its Sioux Falls stores.

The stores at 85th Street and Minnesota Avenue and Arrowhead Parkway and Foss Avenue will start the service May 9.

It’s part of a national 500-store rollout this quarter.

“It’s purely for convenience,” said Dan Roberts, the general manager at the 85th street location. “We’ve had so many requests for it.”

Customers can place orders up to two weeks in advance starting April 25 at Walmart estimates 30,000 items are available online.

Any single item over $50 will still have to be picked up in the Walmart store.

Walmart already offers online ordering and in-store pickup for general merchandise, and Roberts said the volume of orders grows weekly.

“The assortment expands online as well,” he added. “As we go to online grocery, they won’t even get out of their cars. They won’t even get in the door.”

Both Walmart locations are adding bright orange signage to brand areas connected to the pickup service, including a lane directly outside the store. The east-side store is adding an awning to designate its service.

The south-side store, which opened last year, already was approved in city plans for online pickup, Roberts said.

Online ordering will include all produce and meat, and employees will be trained to select them. Customers can designate quantities and offer Walmart the ability to substitute products if a certain brand is out of stock.

“If you select a substitution, we will always give you either a better quality or bigger size if we’re out of stock,” Roberts said.

He’s added a manager and a handful of new employees to oversee the area.

Customers can pick up orders between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. daily.

Customers using online ordering will designate an hour window in between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. to pick up their orders. If the customer is using a Walmart app while headed to the store, it will trigger an alert within the store when the customer is 10 minutes away.

“And then it will tell us when you’re going to be there and we’ll stage everything ready to go,” Roberts said. “If we don’t come right out, there will be a special number to call. But usually that won’t happen, because we have specific people set to take it out there.”

Walmart’s national focus on the service puts it in better position to compete with e-commerce giant Amazon, which is piloting an online grocery pickup program and has said the grocery industry is part of its growth strategy.

In the Sioux Falls market, Hy-Vee has offered online pickup and delivery since 2015 through its Aisles Online program.

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Walmart launching online grocery pickup in Sioux Falls

Walmart is launching online grocery ordering and pickup with some high-tech twists in two of its Sioux Falls stores.

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