- FedEx Office opened its 2,000th retail location with the addition of a storefront in a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia.
- "Having stores inside a national retailer like Walmart gives FedEx Office customers convenient access to printing and shipping where they already shop," a FedEx spokesperson told Supply Chain Dive in an email.
- FedEx Office is planning a nationwide expansion with locations in 500 Walmart stores. This opening marked 150 such locations.
Today we celebrated reaching 2,000 retail locations at our newest FedEx Office store located inside the Chesapeake, VA @Walmart. We look forward to continuing this growth of our retail network nationwide. pic.twitter.com/Z4d5iAwt1m— FedEx Office (@FedExOffice) April 2, 2019
FedEx's strategy to emphasize consumer convenience is part of a growing trend of companies adopting customer-centric supply chains.
"Online shoppers want control over where and when they receive packages — and how they return them," FedEx said. In its press release, FedEx cities a report from Metapack Consumer Research saying 75% of customers are concerned about porch piracy.
FedEx Office retail locations give customers another option for receiving their packages, and consumers worried about packages being stolen from their homes might see this as a good alternative, according to Elliot Rabinovich, a professor of supply chain management at Arizona State University
"So if they locate these stores in urban areas where people have concerns about leaving things outside buildings waiting ... that would be the type of thing to encourage customers to use those locations," Rabinovich told Supply Chain Dive.
Why Walmart? That is also about providing more convenience to their customers, Rabinovich said.
"Having some of them in Walmart stores might be a way to have customers go to those places when they run an errand or they're buying something at Walmart," he said.
Walmart could also benefit from these locations by driving traffic to its stores, he said. What better way to get an Amazon customer into a Walmart than have the customer pick up a package at the big-box store?
"In addition to expanding the FedEx convenience network, Walmart takes FedEx Office into communities where the company didn’t already have a presence," the FedEx spokesperson said, allowing the 3PL to expand its presence without construction from the ground up.