Wal-Mart’s Hypocrisy and Amazon Prime Day

Today is “Prime Day” over at Amazon. If you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber, you can get access to all manner of one-day only deals. If you don’t currently have Prime, you can try it out for free for 30 days to get access to the deals.

In an attempt to compete, Wal-Mart posted on their blog to tout their own low prices. This section really stands out:

We’ve heard some retailers are charging $100 to get access to a sale. But the idea of asking customers to pay extra in order to save money just doesn’t add up for us.

It’s funny. I could swear Wal-Mart ran an entire chain of stores which charges an annual fee to get access to save money. Oh that’s right, they do. It’s called Sam’s Club. But the Washington Post notes even more obvious hypocrisy:

Even as Wal-Mart declares that its deals come without an “admission fee,” the company is piloting a Prime-like program known as Wal-Mart Shipping Pass, which promises unlimited three-day shipping with the purchase of a $50 annual membership. For now, about 1 million best-selling items would be available under Shipping Pass, significantly less than the 20 million available for purchase with Amazon Prime.

Worth noting, the Washington Post article explicitly states “Amazon’s chief executive, Jeffrey P. Bezos, owns The Washington Post”. Whether that led to this particular piece of reportage, I can’t say, but the facts are the facts nonetheless.

I should probably also note that the first paragraph of this post contains referral links to Amazon. I can state that the possibility of earning literally ones of dollars did not convince me to write about this.