Walmart Chooses ‘Prime’ Time to Combat Amazon

Taking on and its “Prime Day,” Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has begun offering free shipping with no minimum purchase on all online orders for five days. The promotion began July 11.

Falling on July 12 this year, Prime Day offers non-members a free 30-day membership to Amazon’s Prime shipping and digital content service, which, among other perks, offers unlimited two-day shipping on most products. Walmart developed a similar promotion that launched July 1, offering a free 30-day trial of its ShippingPass service, which provides subscribers with unlimited two-day shipping on many products. Both services include groceries.

ShippingPass costs roughly half the price of Prime ($49 vs. $99, annually). However, it does not include the many other amenities Prime has, such as a trial subscription to The Washington Post and streaming television shows and movies.

Seattle-based Amazon also is said to be featuring deals similar to those of Black Friday via Prime Day, and Walmart, too, is offering similar deals of its own. However, neither promotional program has deals involving groceries.

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