With the holidays right around the corner, you’re likely doing everything possible to prepare. Perhaps you’re building up inventory, or maybe you’re reorganizing your storefronts. In any case, you intend all your preparations to give you a competitive edge over other sellers.
The Walmart Commission Adjustment Program (CAP) can help you get shipshape for the holiday shopping season if you sell on Walmart. Read on to discover more about the Walmart CAP, who is eligible, and how you can leverage this system over the next quarter.
What is CAP?
To keep your store competitive, Walmart recognizes that you must also keep your prices competitive. But, at the same time, Walmart’s sales commission may keep you from slashing your prices more than you already do.
With this in mind, Walmart created the Commission Adjustment Program.
With products enrolled in the CAP, Walmart will display to customers a slightly lower price on an item than the seller originally listed. If someone purchases the product with this lower displayed price, the seller still sees the intended profit – but Walmart takes a lower commission.
If you’re trying to sell an item for $100 with a $10 shipping fee, Walmart may show customers a price of $90 (retaining the $10 shipping fee). If a customer purchases the product at $92, you still receive the same payment as $85. Walmart and its commission are the ones who feel the difference after the price reduction.
Since Walmart ultimately controls who can sell using CAP and with which products, they also decide how much any price is adjusted. The change is usually insignificant, however. As a result, sellers will likely see an adjustment of only a few dollars.
Not Just for the Sellers
Having a distributor help sellers give discounts may sound too good to be true, but Walmart is far from the first to employ this idea. Back in 2017, Amazon started handing out Discounts Provided by Amazon. In much the same way, Amazon offers discounts to customers on select products in select storefronts, while sellers still receive the total intended profit from their sales.
Commission reduction programs are intended to draw customers to third-party selling platforms on big-box store sites. In addition, the low prices are likely to entice potential buyers that would otherwise look into purchasing products directly from well-known third-party sites (i.e., eBay). Ironically, the Discounts Provided by Amazon program was launched to stay competitive with Walmart’s third-party selling platform.
How Do I Sign Up for CAP?
The short answer is: you can’t.
Currently, the program is invite-only. There is no direct way to apply or opt in. However, Walmart automatically enrolls all eligible items, so you may be a member seller without knowing it! Some sellers reported receiving email invitations regarding CAP from Walmart, but there are other ways to check if you have been approved.
As a start, you can download your CAP report. To do this, navigate the Items page on your Walmart Seller Center panel. Then, click on “CAP Program.” This will allow you to download a report on which items are opted-in to the program.
There is a lot of information in this report. First, you can find the usual data bites, like your Partner ID, Stock Keeping Unit (SKU), and currency (probably still in USD). One column to pay special attention to is titled “SKU Opt-In.” If a product has a “Y” in that column, that means that the product is both eligible for, and enrolled in, CAP. If an “N” is listed, the product is eligible for CAP but has not been enrolled.
With all of these changes seemingly being made without your knowledge, you’ll probably want a way to keep an eye on the products sold using CAP.
If CAP has changed a product’s listed price, you’ll be able to find the adjusted price on your Seller Center. If all else fails, you can open a new window in your preferred browser’s “Incognito Mode.” From there, you can navigate to your products and view your storefront from a new customer’s point of view. Remember: you are making the same amount of money on this product as before — Walmart makes up the difference.
Can I Opt Out of CAP?
While many sellers would rejoice at the prospect of offering attractive discounts to customers at no cost to their final sales numbers, Walmart is aware that some might not want arbitrarily lower prices listed on their storefronts. Moreover, especially in the case of artisan goods, or other products that rely on high quality as a selling point, some may feel that offering lower prices would invoke a negative tone on the craftsmanship or durability of the item in question.
For these reasons, Walmart lets you quickly opt out of selling with CAP. You must first download the above CAP report to keep your prices exactly where you want them. From there, you can change the status of any products you wish to be removed from the program from “Y” to “N.” Once you’ve made all necessary changes, you must upload the edited file to Seller Center. From there, Walmart will update your prices back to their original status.
Take the Reins with StoreAutomator
Selling on any third-party platform can be a constant race to keep up. With market demands constantly shifting and marketplaces updating sales algorithms daily, you need a partner to help keep you in control of your sales.
At StoreAutomator, we specialize in helping brands and retailers make the most of their ecommerce operations. Our team can help you navigate the ups and downs of multichannel sales. StoreAutomator keeps your sales numbers at your fingertips so that you can stay up to date on the metrics that matter.
Want to see everything that StoreAutomator has to offer your business? Request a live demo today to see all of our tools at work for you.