Walmart Debuts In-Store Parcel Stations to Speed Delivery

Walmart has introduced parcel stations — essentially mini “post offices” designed to streamline stores’ receiving and delivering of orders — and will have them operating in more than 40 stores by the end of 2023. Many are operating now, in time for the holiday season, and Walmart plans to expand the stations to additional stores next year.

“Today we have over 4,000 stores operating as delivery hubs, fulfilling and delivering a variety of different order types,” wrote Jennifer McKeehan, SVP, Transportation and Delivery at Walmart in a blog post. “Parcel stations help us move goods even faster to a customer’s home by using our private fleet to transport more online orders. Packages originate in our fulfillment centers and move to a sortation center or directly to stores, where they are then delivered to a customer’s home using our last-mile delivery network.”

Walmart believes customers will benefit from the parcel stations by giving them additional time to place online orders on a larger merchandise assortment for next-day delivery. In-store associates will benefit from a more efficient distribution process. “Collectively, the entire process builds density to lower the cost of delivery, which we can reinvest back into the customer experience,” wrote McKeehan.

The retailer will use the parcel stations to enhance fulfillment services for other retailers delivered via Walmart GoLocal, which the company introduced in August 2021. Walmart has made a number of enhancements to its fulfillment capabilities in recent months, including plans to open a fifth next-generation fulfillment center in 2026 in Stockton, Calif. and scaling up its plans for drone deliveries by partnering with Google parent company Alphabet.