This Is the Wrong Move for Wal-Mart | The Motley Fool

Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) has built its image around offering “everyday low prices,” but the giant retailer’s latest move could put that reputation in jeopardy.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Wal-Mart has been quietly raising prices for household items like Colgate toothbrushes and Kraft macaroni and cheese on its website.

For certain items, Wal-Mart is listing prices in store that are slightly below the online price. For a 6-pack box of Kraft Easy Mac, for example, the company charges $3.83 online if you have it shipped, but just $2.87 for customers who order online but pick it up in the store.

Wal-Mart is attempting to price match Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), and the logic in the decision is clear, following on its earlier Pickup Discount proposition for items not normally carried in stores. Shipping such small items is relatively expensive, and it eats into the company’s margins to offer them at the same price as customers pay in store. Marc Lore, who heads Wal-Mart’s e-commerce operations, is hopeful that the policy will induce customers to use the in-store pickup option instead, but it could backfire.

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This Is the Wrong Move for Wal-Mart.