This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Wal-Mart's Online Offensive: Taking Aim at Amazon, eBay

BRISBANE, Calif. (TheStreet) -- Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) strikes fear in its competitors whenever it rolls out a new initiative. But with the addition of vendors to its Web site it is taking aim at some new rivals: Amazon.com (AMZN) and eBay (EBAY).

The behemoth retailer announced on Monday that it is adding one million new products to its Web site by teaming with outside vendors. The new items will come from vendors that include CSN Stores, Pro Team and eBags, expanding Walmart's offerings in home, baby, apparel, sporting goods and toys.

Moving forward, Wal-Mart says it plans to pair with more vendors -- a strategy that could pose a threat to online market places like Amazon and eBay.

Sell Ebay!: Against the Grain

Of course with only three outside vendors, its current threat to these other third-party sites is minimal. But if the discount giant lives up to its word and does add more vendors, a pinch will surely be felt.

Walmart.com attracted 33 million unique U.S. visitors in July, compared with 67 million for Amazon, according to Compete, a market research firm. Amazon and Wal-Mart ranked first and second, respectively, among retail Web sites during the month.

eBay outpaced both sites, with 70.5 million unique visitors during the month, according to Compete.

Wal-Mart ranked the 14th largest online retailer in 2008 with $1.7 billion in sales, according to Internet Retailer. In comparison, Amazon was No. 1, with $20 billion in sales.

Indeed, Wal-Mart's marketplace might pose a bigger threat to eBay than it does to Amazon. eBay's core business is selling third-party goods, while Amazon has additional sources of revenue, including running Web sites for other companies, such as Marks & Spencer and Timex. Amazon's Fulfillment by Amazon service, which allows third-party retailers to outsource the billing and shipping of products, is a big draw. Wal-Mart's new site will not offer this perk. Neither does eBay.

Amazon has also ranked in the top three sites for customer satisfaction, while eBay has been consistently berated for its service.

Ultimately, if Wal-Mart's third-party initiatives are successful, thatcould open the floodgates for other retailers like Target (TGT), Sears (SHLD) and Best Buy (BBY) to create their own marketplaces.

Still, with many retailers lagging behind the online retail trend, it will presumably be some time before Amazon and eBay truly need to worry.

-- Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York.

Follow TheStreet.com on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.

Copyright 2009 TheStreet.com Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,943.81 +28.74 0.17%
S&P 500 1,967.57 +2.89 0.15%
NASDAQ 4,415.49 +19.2860 0.44%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto
Advertising Partners

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs