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Walmart’s New In-Store AI Enhances Sales Strategies With Real-Time Product Guidance

This AI device built by Walmart informs the employees when to sell fruit like bananas before they rot.
Cover Image Source: A sign hangs outside a Walmart store in Chicago, Illinois | Getty Images|Photo by Scott Olson
Cover Image Source: A sign hangs outside a Walmart store in Chicago, Illinois | Getty Images|Photo by Scott Olson

In recent years, artificial intelligence (AI) has rapidly expanded its influence across various industries, transforming traditional processes and enhancing efficiency. The usage of AI-driven tools and techniques is reforming the ways making it easier for store workers as well as professionals. This brand-new way of performing tasks with an AI assistant helps the employees not just help them make smarter choices but also makes them efficient in handling the products, setting price ranges, and exceeding their monthly targets. But is this really possible? Walmart has outdone itself by integrating an in-store AI that not only helps the employees but also tells them know better about the product's condition, thereby, managing the sales in a better way.


Stores like Walmart and Costco have witnessed humungous quantities of food, clothes, apparel, beverages, and other items rot in front of their eyes. They felt helpless as the products expired before they could replace them, causing huge losses to the warehouses and stores. Walmart came up with an interesting solution of introducing AI-driven scanners that will help the store employees know better about the products, especially fruits. This AI device built by Walmart informs the employees when to sell fruit like bananas before they rot. Additionally, it tells the workers when to initiate apparel sales as fashion trends change suddenly.


Swati Kirti, Senior Director of Data Science at Walmart International Tech informed, "This AI tool basically helps associates take off that decision making and helps them to know exactly what to do with that product at that given time." The device also works on advising the employees about whether the products need a price change or a replacement due to their degrading quality and issues a warning if the products need to be returned to the vendor. This is done using a special scanner that easily scans the item and provides all the relevant details.

If there is an AI technique that can scan clothes for a quality check mid-season, cloth wastage can easily be reduced, thus, helping save money. Walmart has made this possible with its scanner which can be used for all the store items. Walmart's AI-driven program is in the testing phase and will soon be going through trials in Canada hoping to join in other countries. As per the numbers revealed by the Recycle Track Systems, the U.S. throws away about 60 million tons of food each year, which is about 40% of all the food in the country. Talking about Walmart, the store itself wasted about 3.5 million tons of food in 2018 alone. After launching the tool, Sravana Karnati, Senior VP and CTO for Walmart International Technology, Walmart Global Tech says, "Using tools like our AI-powered waste management system helps lessen our environment footprint, requiring fewer societal resources and, at the same time, helping to reduce our own operating costs."


Additionally, Americans are so used to waste that they throw away about 11.3 million tons of clothes every year. To curb this problem, Walmart has come forward with its "Take Back" program where customers can send back old clothes. All this directly goes to the Walmart Foundation where the institution also works with Goodwill in the recycling process. Stores like Amazon, Walmart, and Target are working on their packaging to reduce the waste elements and have been able to do it. Homer Swei, Senior VP of nonprofit EWG, said, "Retailers have a tremendous power to minimize their own environmental footprint, as well as the brands and their supply chains, and to do good for the planet."