Suppliers doing business on Walmart.com most likely quickly realized that there are vast differences in managing the online business with the brick-and-mortar business. It is like two distinct businesses, from a new item setup and packaging requirements to different language, accountability metrics, and methodologies.
One of the most significant operational differences is managing Walmart.com inventory. Brick-and-mortar (or physical store) inventory is straightforward to decipher. One simple Decision Support report, and you can gain total visibility to the entire supply chain. The online world is different, though, mainly due to inventory ownership.
Walmart owns all brick-and-mortar inventory. Once the retailer places a purchase order for a supplier’s product, it is on Walmart’s books. In contrast, online inventory has two distinct inventory buckets: owned and DSV, or dropship vendor.
For owned inventory, Walmart’s online team purchases the product in case quantities and fulfills online orders from their Online Fulfillment Centers. Walmart houses the merchandise and ships it to customers.
It is common for Walmart.com suppliers to have blended freight terms. Walmart Fulfillment Centers fulfill some of their orders, while they use DSV channels to fulfill others.
From a reporting standpoint, owned inventory is as simple as running a quick Decision Support report called “Inventory Summary.” The following screenshots will walk you through the steps necessary to create the Dotcom Inventory Summary report in Decision Support.
Path to Walmart.com Inventory Summary for Owned Inventory Only
Open the Inventory Summary report template, and make the following Column selections:
Report Column Selections – Owned Inventory Report
The Items tab is where you will define the pool of items that you wish to include in this report. There are many options available to filter the report results, including:
For this example, we are going to use the Vendor Nbr (6-digit) filter. This selection will return all items associated with this vendor number.
Items selection – Owned Inventory Report
The Times tab is where you will define the time range for this report. This option allows you to select a short-, medium-, or long-term range for your reporting needs. However, since this is an inventory report, the only selection we need to make is Current Week. This selection will provide us a snapshot of the inventory position for your items as of the night before running this report.
Times selection – Owned Inventory Report
Now that we have made all of the appropriate selections, we can now run this report. Decision Support will gather the requested data and prepare the results in Excel format.
Submit selection – Owned Inventory Report
This report will give the supplier an estimate of the total units in the Walmart.com supply chain. More importantly, these numbers are tied with the public website and determine whether your item appears as instock or out-of-stock on Walmart.com.
As you can see, the tracking of inventory for Walmart.com is a much more manual process than traditional brick-and-mortar reporting. The process is, thankfully, relatively simple. Try to work this into your weekly “to do” list to maintain available inventory on Walmart.com and avoid those dreaded Out of Stock messages!
No more messy spreadsheets! Use SupplyPike’s Retail Intelligence app to view your dotcom inventory with the click of a button.
Retail Intelligence – Online Warehouse On Hand metric
Tim has been in the Walmart supplier community for over 15 years. His expertise is in Consulting, Business Analytics, and Retail Link for Walmart suppliers.Visit their Website ➝