Wal-Mart ramps up back-to-school sales

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - BUSINESS & FARM - — Rob­bie Neiswanger

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is in­tro­duc­ing “back to school helpers” as part of its plan to make the back-to-school shop­ping sea­son more con­ve­nient for cus­tomers.

The helpers, who are mod­eled from the re­tailer’s “hol­i­day helpers” that were po­si­tioned in stores dur­ing the Christ­mas sea­son, are among the pro­grams Wal­Mart high­lighted Thurs­day.

In ad­di­tion, Wal-Mart said hun­dreds of back-toschool items will be avail­able as part of its on­line gro­cery pickup ser­vice, which is avail­able in about 800 lo­ca­tions.

Wal-Mart also is in­te­grat­ing the back-to-school shop­ping re­source, TeacherLists, so cus­tomers can get the sup­plies they need, or­der with one click and pick the items up or have them de­liv­ered. Wal-Mart said nearly 500,000 class­room lists are avail­able for search and the num­ber is ex­pected to grow to more than a mil­lion by the end of Au­gust.

Back-to-school sea­son is the sec­ond busiest sales pe­riod for re­tail­ers. Shop­pers will spend an es­ti­mated $83.6 bil­lion this year, a 10 per­cent in­crease from 2016, the Na­tional Re­tail Fed­er­a­tion said.

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