The Home Depot Inc. ( HD Quick Quote HD - Free Report) is progressing well with its interconnected strategy, which focuses on expanding supply-chain facilities, technology investments and enhancement to the digital experience. In the latest development to expand the same-day and next-day delivery options for customers, the company has collaborated with Walmart’s ( WMT Quick Quote WMT - Free Report) “Walmart GoLocal” delivery service. With the partnership, Home Depot has become the first retail partner for Walmart GoLocal. Launched recently, Walmart GoLocal is Walmart’s latest initiative to provide its expertise local delivery to businesses of all sizes at reasonable prices. The service will be used to deliver items of large size and complex requirements, while also providing the flexibility in meeting different delivery timelines like express, same-day and next-day delivery. Through the service, Home Depot’s customers can avail of same-day or next-day delivery options on a variety of home improvement products. Home Depot expects to launch the delivery service through Walmart GoLocal in select markets in the coming weeks. The service will be further expanding to several markets across the United States by the end of the year. Products, including tools, fasteners, paint and other supplies, that can be transported in cars are eligible for the delivery service. Customers will have the option to select the Walmart GoLocal delivery service at the time of online checkout. The partnership is in sync with Home Depot’s goal of providing same-day or next-day deliveries to about 90% of the U.S. population. The company has been keen on crafting a comprehensive and innovative delivery network to enhance customer experience. It has a target of rendering same-day or next-day deliveries no matter the product or project purchased. Anything from a box of nails, décor items to big and bulky shipments of lumber, drywall or appliances should be eligible for quick deliveries for the ease of customers. Over the years, the company has created the fastest, most efficient delivery network in home improvement through options like buy online pickup in store (BOPIS) with convenient pickup lockers, buy online deliver from store with express car and van delivery, and the curbside pickup. It also offers scheduled delivery, allowing customers to choose the day and time of delivery of the project materials directly to their homes or job sites. Apart from featuring products of any size or volume, its delivery network provides delivery options for both Pro and DIY customers. In the first quarter of fiscal 2021, it rolled out the new mixed-cart selling from store capability, eliminating the friction for both customers and associates. The mixed-cart feature enables customers to add products from the website as well as a store under a single transaction. This also enables associates to more efficiently serve the total project needs of customers. The company is also looking to enhance interconnected facilities in tool rental through the expansion of rent online pilot chain-wide. The capability is likely to enhance the experience for both Pro and DIY customers. The interconnected retail strategy and underlying technology infrastructure have helped consistently boost web traffic for the past few quarters. Sales leveraging the digital platforms remained almost flat in second-quarter fiscal 2021, as the company lapped digital sales growth of approximately 100% in the second quarter of last year. On a two-year stack basis, sales from digital platforms increased nearly 100%. Around 55% of the online orders were delivered from a store. In fiscal 2020, Home Depot witnessed digital sales improve 86%, with more than 50% of online orders being delivered through stores.
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Backed by the gains from the aforementioned initiatives, the Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company’s shares have rallied 24.4% year to date compared with the
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