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Walmart Going Big With Electronic Shelf Labels

Technology will be rolled out at 2,300 stores by 2026
Emily Crowe, Progressive Grocer
Walmart electronic shelf label
Walmart's digital shelf labels can be updated with the use of a mobile app.

Following a successful pilot at one of its stores in Texas, Walmart is laying out plans to introduce digital shelf labels (DSLs) at 2,300 of its stores over the next two years. The labels, developed by Vusion Group, will allow the retailer to update prices at the shelf using a mobile app.

Daniela Boscan, food & consumable team lead in Hurst, Texas, wrote in a company blog post that Walmart has been testing the digital labels at Store 266 in Grapevine, Texas, and that the technology has helped her team work faster and provide a better customer experience. Key benefits of the Vusion Group shelf labels include:

  • Simplified stock replenishment: With the “Stock to Light” feature, an associate can flash an LED light on the shelf tag using their mobile device, signaling locations that require attention. This feature makes it easier for associates to identify shelf location when stocking shelves.
  • Faster order picking and fulfillment: The “Pick to Light” feature guides us directly to the products needed for online orders, speeding up the picking process and improving order accuracy.
  • Increased productivity and reduced walking time: DSLs allow us to update prices with a few clicks. A price change that used to take an associate two days to update now takes only minutes with the new DSL system. This efficiency means we can spend more time assisting customers and less time on repetitive tasks.

“The transition to digital shelf labels is a game-changer for Walmart, our customers and our associates,” Boscan wrote. “It is not only about improving efficiency and customer satisfaction, but also about integrating sustainability into our work, in this case, to help reduce operational waste.”

Continued Boscan: “As we continue to digitalize stores and expand digital shelf labels to 2,300 stores by 2026, we are excited about the positive impact this innovation will have on our operations and the environment.”

Walmart has been on a roll with technology integration as of late, and Anshu Bhardwaj, SVP & COO, Walmart Global Tech & Walmart Commerce Technologies, joined Progressive Grocer at its GroceryTech event last week to discuss the company’s latest innovations. Bhardwaj talked about Walmart’s efforts to commercialize its technology, specifically pointing to Store Assist and Route Optimization.

She also discussed the concept of adaptive retail, which entails “whether you want to shop online, whether you want to shop with your friends on social media, whether you want to go into a store and shop, … [or] have things delivered in your car,” Bhardwaj said.

“Technology is not just an enabler anymore,” she told PG Editor-in-Chief Gina Acosta. “It's actually an innovator and a disruptor in helping you lead your competition, no matter what industry you're in.”

Each week, about 240 million customers and members visit Walmart’s approximately 10,500 stores and numerous e-commerce websites in 19 countries. The Bentonville, Ark.-based company employs approximately 2.1 million associates worldwide. Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on Progressive Grocer’s 2024 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America, while its Sam’s Club division is No. 8. Progressive Grocer also named Walmart one of its Retailers of the Century

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