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Innovation

Walmart withdraws from Google shopping service

Google has lost one of the headline retail partners of its Shopping Actions program, an e-commerce initiative that it launched in March 2018.

The tech giant confirmed via tweet last week that Walmart is no longer selling products through Shopping Actions. The retailer was one of a handful of companies, including Target, Home Depot, Costco Wholesale, 1-800-FLOWERS and Ulta Beauty, on board when the service launched last year.

Shopping Actions was meant to make it easier for customers to buy items online that they search for online by connecting the company’s Shopping ads, Google Express delivery service and Google Assistant-enabled devices.

Customers could add products they searched for to a ‘universal shopping cart’ either by clicking on a sponsored listing in a Google search result or shopping via voice on Google Home. They could then purchase items from different retailers in a single transaction through a Google-hosted checkout flow.

The news of Walmart’s departure from the program has been described as a blow to Google, which has been looking to capture a greater share of the e-commerce market from Amazon.

Bloomberg quoted representatives from both Walmart and Google as saying they were still committed to a strategic partnership. Walmart is reportedly still committed to using Google Ads and developing tie-ins to Google’s AI-enabled smart speakers.

“We are committed to the success of retailers and partner with them in many different ways to help users discover and purchase millions of products across platforms,” a Google spokeswoman told Bloomberg.

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