Amazon.com Inc (AMZN) or Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT) – Retails Worry and Shoppers Delight

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Christmas being just two months away, are you going to shop for gifts at Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) or simply log on to Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) and hunt through the latest offerings?

Thanks to the growing trend of online shopping coupled with exceptional high temperatures during the month of October, most of the people have taken to shopping from with the comforts of their homes. This in turn has impacted retail stores in a big way with many of the well-known names responding by drastically cutting down prices. With this strategy likely to continue throughout the holiday season, meaning the forthcoming months of November-December, Ken Perkins, President of Retail Metrics, had the following comment to make –

“This has in turn forced many mall-based and big box retailers to ratchet up their discounting into the 40-60 percent off range already as we turn the corner and head into what is widely expected to be a very promotional holiday shopping season.”

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To cash in on this phenomenon of online shopping, Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) introduced its online version namely Wal-Mart.com and grapevine has it that the basket of goodies purchased on it would work out to be 5% cheaper than an identical version bought at the physical store. In comparison, Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) worked out to be more expensive than both versions of Wal-Mart wherein it was 12% more than the physical store and 17% higher than the online option.

Credit for comparing Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) and Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) on the basis of price goes to Kantar Retail and its Vice-President Anne Zybowski made the following observation –

“While Walmart looks to offer consistently low prices across channels, it is also contending with the dynamic pricing realities online retail entails.”

Not the one to be left behind, Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) is gearing up for the holiday season in its own characteristic way and its first scheme which is slated to trigger off on 1st November, 2014, is labeled as ‘Black Friday’. On its part, Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) has employed 60,000 employees more to ensure that its cash registers remain open and process speedily even during peak hours.

This article has been written by Vinita Basu.

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