Walmart is the world's largest retailer. In fact, the company earned $152.3 billion in 2022.
Its secret to success is simple: Walmart is investing more in eCommerce. Although platforms like Amazon and eBay are still out-performing in terms of traffic and sales, Walmart Marketplace is growing in popularity with shoppers and eCommerce store owners.
Walmart allows third-party sellers to sell products via Walmart Marketplace, which now includes well over 150,000 sellers.
If you’re an experienced store owner who’s ready to take your shop to the next level, sign up for Walmart Marketplace. It’s a great opportunity for small businesses and professional sellers to increase sales and reach a loyal customer base of Walmart shoppers.
It has less competition than other sales channels, so selling on Walmart Marketplace is a great next step for experienced eCommerce stores.
In this guide, we’ll show you how to become a Walmart Marketplace seller. We’ll also share a few innovative solutions and tips to help you be more successful on the platform.
First things first, you need to meet Walmart’s strict requirements to even apply as a Marketplace seller. Walmart definitely wants more third-party sellers on the platform, but it’s still choosy about who it works with.
You need to meet these criteria to apply:
Walmart only works with companies with a proven track record, so if you’re new to eCommerce, it’s best to sell on other platforms first and return to Walmart once you have more experience.
If you meet all of these criteria, fantastic! Follow these steps to complete the online application and start selling on Walmart Marketplace.
Start by submitting an application to be a third-party seller. The online registration process takes about 15 minutes, but you’ll need to provide a lot of information.
Have this information on hand to speed up the approval process:
Once you have this information, visit the Walmart Seller Center and complete the form to create an account.
It can take up to a month for Walmart to process your application, so be patient. Be as thorough as possible while filling out your application to avoid delays.
Walmart will notify you once they make a decision on your application. If they didn’t approve your application, it’s likely because of a lack of experience or missing information. They will tell you why they rejected your application, so use this information to make changes and apply again later.
Walmart will tell you to set up a seller account once it approves your application. Click on the link in your approval email to start the onboarding process.
Log into Seller Central and enter your company name and corporate address. Walmart will also ask you to sign the Walmart Retailer Agreement.
This is a legally binding agreement, so read it carefully and ensure you agree with all of their terms.
Walmart will need your tax information before it can pay you, so submit a recent W-9 in the Seller Center portal.
During account setup, you also need to choose how to accept payments from Walmart. Walmart will charge referral fees to this payment method, although it usually deducts these fees from your sales totals, but as a new seller, you might have to pay fees while waiting for your first payment to clear.
Walmart processes payments through Payoneer and Hyperwallet for third-party sellers in the U.S. The good news is that it processes all payments as ACH, so you don’t have to worry about processing fees.
It’s important to note that Walmart holds new seller payments. It will hold payments for 14 days until you meet one of these criteria:
Walmart doesn’t play around, so it will suspend your payments for low performance. You might have payments suspended if you have a high refund rate (it needs to be below 10% for 30 days), missing tax documentation, or delivery delays. Ensure you follow Walmart’s performance standards to avoid any payment disruptions.
You have complete control over how you’ll ship goods to your customers. If you aren’t using Walmart Fulfillment Services (WFS), this is the time to specify:
The final step is to do item set up so you can begin selling on Walmart. Walmart Marketplace doesn’t have a SKU minimum or maximum, so you’re free to list as many or as few products as you like.
Product listings are crucial to succeeding as a Walmart Marketplace seller. Take time to optimize your listings as much as possible, and make sure you select the correct primary product categories for each listing. This is the best way to boost your ranking in the Walmart algorithm and give your shoppers the best possible experience.
Once you load your listings into your account, Walmart will request a test order. This step ensures that you meet Walmart’s standards, but it’s also helpful to you as a seller since it double-checks that everything works properly.
If you sell products in multiple categories, test a few options in each category. Don’t worry—you don’t need to actually ship them.
Follow Walmart’s guide to finalize your order testing.
Once you validate the ordering process, Walmart will approve your listings to go live. It can take anywhere from 30 minutes to two days for this to process, so be patient.
At this point, you’ve completed the Seller Launch Checklist. Tap the “Go Live” button in your Seller Center dashboard to start selling on Walmart.
Want to boost your sales on Walmart Marketplace? Follow these tips to successfully sell more products as a Walmart Marketplace seller.
Walmart cares a lot about offering the lowest prices. Competitive pricing is crucial, but you don’t want to participate in a race to the bottom that hurts your profits, either.
Use pricing automation tools like Spark Shipping to offer low prices without hurting your margins—or jeopardizing your relationship with Walmart.
P.S. Don’t forget to account for referral fees and fulfillment fees in your pricing. Offering the cheapest price might increase your sales, but if you’re spending more than you earn, your business won’t survive.
Walmart has stringent performance standards. If your listings fail to measure up, Walmart might unpublish certain products, which can hurt your business. Walmart will unpublish products if they don’t meet certain benchmarks, have missing images, or use incorrect dates.
Go to the Unpublished Items Dashboard in Seller Center to see why Walmart unpublished your listings. The good news is that you don’t have to do any detective work to figure out why Walmart unpublished the listings—it’s all available in the dashboard.
Walmart will provide a code for each unpublished item and share instructions on how to republish that item. When you solve the issue, you can start selling that product again.
The quality of your listings has a big impact on sales. Walmart provides the Listing Quality Dashboard to tell you how effective your listings actually are.
It analyzes each listing and assigns it a Listing Quality Score on a scale of zero to 99. Walmart determines this score based on your listing content, the offering itself, your reviews, and the quality of the post-purchase experience (like customer returns).
The dashboard will also offer advice on how to improve your Quality Score. Again, this is great because you don’t have to guess what Walmart wants. It’s like having a business coach built into your seller dashboard.
Based on what you learn, you might need to change your pricing, add more product images, or offer fast shipping to boost your Quality Score.
Walmart Fulfillment Services works similarly to Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA). If you sign up for WFS, it will store inventory, pick, pack, and ship orders for you. Simply ship your products to one of the Walmart warehouses and Walmart will handle everything from there.
Of course, this fulfillment option isn’t free. There are a lot of fees associated with fulfillment services, so you need to proceed carefully to make sure you can recoup these costs.
Check out the WFS portal to estimate your fulfillment fees before signing up.
Walmart Marketplace operates like a search engine, and the better you play with the algorithm, the better your products will rank in search. If you want to win the coveted Buy Box—which goes to the seller with the best pricing and shipping options—optimize your listings to come out on top.
Walmart SEO is an art form in and of itself, but you can follow these quick tips to optimize your rank over time.
Shoppers use certain search queries or keywords to find your products on Walmart Marketplace. Try to add these keywords to your listings to show up in more searches.
Add keywords to your titles and product descriptions, but keep them within 50 to 75 characters for readability.
Use bullet points to highlight your product benefits, listing at least three to five reasons your product is the best. As always, add a few keywords here, but don’t lay it on so thick that it hurts the text’s readability.
Grainy images are hard to understand and hurt the shopper experience. Nobody wants to see grainy images, so if your manufacturer provided low-quality images, take new ones with a professional photographer.
Instead of uploading just one image for each product, upload multiple shots of the product from different angles. Use a mix of photos showing the product on a plain white background and of the product in use.
It’s tempting to use Photoshop to create these photos, but shoppers can see right through a bad Photoshop job. It’s best to take real photos.
If possible, upload short videos showing the product in use. This isn’t mandatory, but it adds more context to your listings and tells shoppers that you’re a high-quality, professional seller.
It’s hard gathering customer reviews, but this is an important ranking factor for Walmart SEO.
You want to gather as many highly-rated reviews as possible. Ask people to leave a review on the product page or enroll in Walmart’s Review Accelerator Program.
With this program, Walmart encourages shoppers to leave authentic reviews. You’ll pay $10 per review (for a max of five reviews per item), so this can get expensive, but if you have the budget, we say go for it!
As always, deliver an amazing experience that makes people more than happy to leave a review. The more 5-star reviews you have from verified buyers, the more likely your products are to rank highly in search.
For increased visibility, consider signing up for Walmart Marketplace Sponsored Products. This cost-per-click advertising service boosts your products in the search results, so you potentially make more sales.
Paid ads promote your products at the top of the product search page. If you get your campaign settings just right, shoppers will see your products at the top of the page—even if your organic rank isn't on the front page.
If you’re new to PPC ads, go with the Automatic campaign setting. Walmart will decide when to serve your ads, although you do give up some control. If you’re familiar with PPC, sign up for a Manual campaign to choose which search queries to bid on.
Keep in mind that the quality of your listings still matters. Walmart determines which products earn the sponsored products slot based partially on reviews, pricing, and quality customer service. If you’re paying for ads and aren’t seeing results, improve other aspects of your Walmart shop first and then try paid ads again.
Walmart Marketplace has stringent application standards, but it’s the perfect opportunity for you to expand your audience and earning potential. Selling on Walmart Marketplace offers more visibility that can take your shop to the next level.
The tips in this guide will help you become a successful seller, but even then, you’re doing all of the work manually. If you’re selling on multiple platforms, that time and effort really add up.
Automate your dropshipping or eCommerce store with a solution like Spark Shipping. We help online store owners streamline:
… and a lot more.
Get a quick Spark Shipping demo now to see how automation can streamline your business while increasing sales.