BENTONVILLE, Ark. -- Wal-Mart Stores here has added video to the mix in its new test Neighborhood Market supermarket format.
Sell-through video is included in a compact version of its electronics departments located in the back of the Springdale and Fort Smith, Ark., stores, which opened on Nov. 11. Video is not carried in the first two stores, which are located here in Bentonville and in Sherwood, Ark.
The departments also include photo processing, film, blank tapes and music -- "a few select better-moving items" from the chain's regular electronics program, according to a store employee. The sections are located in the back of the stores.
"We're trying different things and finding out what it is the customer is really looking for," said Nick White, executive vice president of Wal-Mart's supercenter division, speaking at the SN Food Retailing Summit last month.
Video rental is another possibility as Wal-Mart continues to experiment with the grocery-oriented format, White said. "At this point we haven't gotten into video rental in the Neighborhood store, although that may be something that makes sense. We're not sure about that," he said.
"We think these units need to be market-specific. We may not be able to have one prototype that fits all, and so there may be different offerings in different stores," he said.