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On a Thursday earnings call, Walmart announced that it beat Wall Street expectations for sales and profits in Q2 – and the company raised its full-year forecast for net sales and earnings per share. Walmart brass attributed the rosier outlook to a 24% increase in e-commerce revenue, along with a boost in grocery sales and Walmart+ membership sign-ups.
The latest quarterly report aligns with ongoing CivicScience polling that detected a recent surge in Walmart favorability. Consumers favorable to Walmart increased by three percentage points from May to July (monthly averages of 50% and 53%, respectively). Walmart’s favorability was hovering around 50% for much of 2023 before the recent surge, after being slightly underwater for the majority of 2022.
Consistent with the company’s messaging about an increase in grocery business, over one-quarter of Walmart customers (28%) claimed they’ve cut back on grocery stores/supermarkets due to ‘inflation/higher prices’ in August. Beyond just groceries, over half of Walmart shoppers claim they’ve become generally ‘more price sensitive’ in the last 12 months – with 28% claiming they’re ‘much more’ price sensitive.
Walmart’s multi-pronged approach to growth extends to health and wellness this weekend, with a back-to-school-tailored Wellness Day – designed to offer health screenings, vaccinations, and other wellness check-ups ahead of the school year. Sixteen percent of U.S. adults are at least ‘somewhat likely’ to attend Wellness Day on August 19, with 6% reporting they’re ‘very likely.’ Both figures increase slightly among Walmart customers, with 19% saying they’re at least ‘somewhat likely,’ and 8% for ‘very likely.’
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