Walmart is building a platform to connect makers, content and social commerce

March 14, 2023

The creator economy market is valued at $104.2 billion and the number of creators continues to grow dramatically. This wave of user-generated content (UGC) is causing retailers to rethink how they leverage and manage social commerce, content, and creators.

While many widely available digital exchanges connect creators and influencers with brands, Walmart is beta testing its own exchange to bring content, creators and commerce together. Walmart Creator, a commerce platform for monetizing shoppable products, is the next evolution of the retailer’s social media strategy and digital presence.

Sarah Henry, VP, Content, Influencer and Commerce at Walmart, said during a recent fireside chat that the retailer plans to “close (the) distance between content and purchase” – “From Inspiration to Purchase: Walmart’s Approach to Content, Creators and Social Commerce” – at eTail West Palm Springs 2023.

The Walmart Creator platform is designed to nurture relationships with creators (anyone with the ability to tell stories who have an audience) to:

  • Reach customers where they spend time
  • Create moments of discovery and inspiration
  • Save steps along the purchase path

The platform enables content creators to share stories and product recommendations that drive both on-site and in-store traffic. Creators generate content for their own followers, build their brand presence and earn commissions through Walmart’s Affiliates programs.

Walmart strives to improve the product discovery process by partnering with makers who have highly engaged communities that can increase the visibility of under-shopped categories and show ways to think differently about Walmart. The retailer is implementing technology to reduce the number of steps during the shopping experience through purchaseable recipes, live streaming, partnerships and buy-from ads.

Walmart takes a full funnel approach and incorporates many channels into its campaign mix. The “real strength of the strategy is the ever-available storytelling opportunities,” said Ms Henry, who shared that the retailer hosted 350 livestream events by 2022 and is partnering with more than 10,000 influencers, affiliates, advocates and content creators.

The rise of UGC and the changes in the digital landscape require retailers and brands to adapt their social media and digital strategies to better connect with shoppers and creators. Walmart is doing something smart by developing its platform and taking ownership of the intersection of social commerce, content, and creators.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: What is your assessment of Walmart’s approach to content, creators and social commerce? How does Walmart Creator compare to other retailers’ efforts to harness the power of user-generated content?

Brain confidence

“A huge benefit here is an increase in sustainable retail business practices that Walmart can advocate for.”


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