Walmart officially has hit the halfway point of its goal to bring grocery delivery to 100 metropolitan areas covering four in 10 U.S. households, and is now receiving orders at its 2,000th pickup spot.
The Bentonville, Ark.-based mega-retailer said it launched delivery to its 50th metropolitan area earlier this month in Akron, Ohio, and is planning more along the way.
"When it comes to grocery delivery, we’ve got our foot on the gas," the retailer said. "Combined with third-party crowdsourced delivery providers, we are well on our way to bringing grocery delivery to 100 metro areas covering 40 percent of U.S. households."
Additionally, the retailer's click-and-collect service now spans 2,000 locations, allowing shoppers to buy groceries from home and pickup at the store for no extra charge. The milestone location opened Sept. 20 in Fayetteville, Ark.
"Ninety percent of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart store, and we serve more than 140 million customers a week, which gives us a unique opportunity to make every day a little easier for busy families," Walmart stated. "Grocery Pickup is one way this is happening."
By the end of the fiscal year, Walmart expects to operate 2,140 click-and-collect points in 430 markets, covering 69 percent of U.S. households.
In other Walmart grocery delivery news, earlier this month, the retailer said it is piloting new grocery technology that uses crowdsourcing to lower the costs of last-mile delivery while offering drivers more flexible schedules. Spark Delivery uses an in-house platform that lets drivers sign up for windows of time that work best for their schedules, and gives order details, navigation assistance and more for grocery delivery. The new program is reminiscent of Amazon Flex, which allows people to deliver packages for the Seattle-based ecommerce giant and make $18 to $25 an hour doing so.