Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) is working on a new system that will allow shoppers to preview food items selected for online orders through images. The Fresh Online Experience will use 3D scans to show online customers in store products. Shoppers can choose exact items that will be put into orders that will then be scanned through 3D images pulled from Walmart’s inventory. The pictures are then uploaded to a platform by a store associate that will be sent to the shopper and will receive a notification to review the product. Customers can have the option of rejecting the product selected but are only limited to a certain number of attempts. Following that, they are then prompted to select from one of the previous options that was already sent out. Once approved, the item will receive an “edible watermark” and is then packed for delivery.
Currently, Amazon is head of the online grocery segment, generating $2 billion in revenue in 2017. However, profit mostly came from packaged food products and has gained very little sales from fresh foods. Most shoppers prefer to pick out their groceries especially when it comes to fresh produce. Walmart’s new system can definitely help compete better with Amazon especially if given the option to pick out quality groceries without having to physically see them.