Who Are Walmart‘s Biggest Competitors in 2024? A Complete Rundown

Walmart is famous for its intimidating size and market clout. But in the rapidly evolving retail industry, the world‘s largest company faces stiff competition from all directions.

Whether you‘re a bargain hunter, quality connoisseur or consumer addict, Walmart has rivals aiming to sway you. This comprehensive guide will identify the 23 most potent threats to Walmart‘s dominance across grocery, general merchandise, technology, apparel, and beyond.

Let‘s dive in to see who could disrupt America‘s behemoth retailer in 2024 and beyond!

Kroger – Walmart‘s Grocery Goliath Rival

Walmart fills fridges across America, but Cincinnati-based Kroger remains a formidable foe in food retail. With over 3,000 stores nationwide under brands like Harris Teeter and Ralphs, Kroger pulled in $123 billion in 2020 revenue. That‘s nearly a quarter of Walmart‘s annual sales!

Kroger has turned up the competition lately, investing $3 billion in 2020 alone to enhance in-store experiences and e-commerce. The grocer increased pickup service capacity by 48% to meet soaring online demand during the pandemic. Digital sales grew 116% that year.

Industry analysts see Kroger as one of the only chains with the scale and infrastructure to truly compete with Walmart in grocery. "We see Kroger as one of the most formidable competitors to Walmart in the long run," said Suzanne Kapner of the Wall Street Journal.

For you, Kroger‘s fresh departments like meat and produce could beat Walmart on quality. But where Kroger really shines is digital – their app and website make grocery pickup seamless. So when you need those staples in a hurry, Kroger may get your business over the biggest retailer.

Costco – The Wholesale Giant Taking on Big Retail

When it comes to bulk bargains, Costco is a powerhouse, operating over 800 membership warehouse stores globally. Revenues topped $166 billion in 2020 with over 105 million loyal cardholders.

Founded in 1983 in Seattle, Costco offers everything – electronics, furniture, jewelry, groceries, and more – in supersized packages for big savings. Shopping Costco is almost a recreational sport for many families.

Costco competes fiercely with Walmart for value-focused shoppers. A basket of 19 identical groceries totaled $72 at Walmart vs. $53 at Costco, a 2020 price check found. "We continue to monitor Costco, an exceptional low-cost operator," said a Walmart financial filing.

You‘ll find far more bargains on bulk essentials at Costco. And the treasure hunt-like shopping experience is fun. No wonder Costco‘s renewal rates sit around 90%!

Amazon – Walmart‘s Surging E-Commerce Rival

In online retail, Walmart faces an ever-growing threat from Amazon and its infinite virtual shelves. Founded just 27 years ago, Amazon saw 2020 revenues of $386 billion as shopping migrated online.

Amazon sells literally anything. With 50% of U.S. e-commerce flowing through its site, Amazon is arguably Walmart‘s strongest competitor. "Amazon is beating Walmart on price, services and delivery," analysts at Needham & Company wrote.

As a shopper, you‘ll delight in Amazon‘s unrivaled selection, ease of purchase, and speedy Prime delivery. Its user experience is unmatched. No wonder Prime membership exceeds 200 million globally.

Walmart is fighting hard to stay competitive online. Its 2020 U.S. e-commerce sales grew 79% over 2019. But Amazon still commands nearly twice the online market share. This battle for digital dominance will take years to unfold.

Target – Walmart‘s Fellow Big Box Giant

Fellow big box behemoth Target is another steadfast rival, operating nearly 2,000 stores nationally. 2020 saw Target revenues of $93 billion, up 19.8% over 2019. Higher online sales during COVID-19 drove Target‘s success.

Originally just a Midwest department store in the 1960s, Target has grown into a power player vying directly with Walmart across all product categories today. About 93% of Target locations now fulfill e-commerce orders too.

As a shopper, you may hit Target for trendier apparel and home goods than Walmart. "Tarjay" manages to be hipper and higher-end than Walmart, while competing on price and convenience. No wonder Target‘s sales per square foot lead the industry.

With its popular in-house brands and robust omnichannel experience, Target is poised to battle Walmart over the next-gen retail consumer. This big box bout will be fascinating to watch.

Key Competitor 2020 Revenue Stores
Walmart $559 billion 11,500
Target $93 billion 1,926

Home Depot – Battling in Home Improvement

For home renovation products, Home Depot leads the pack. Founded in 1978 in Atlanta, Home Depot operates over 2,300 stores, largely across North America.

Home Depot stocks every imaginable tool, material, and service for upgrading your living space. 2020 saw revenues soar nearly 20% over 2019 to $132 billion, as DIY projects surged during home isolation.

Home Depot competes vigorously with Walmart in the home improvement industry, which is projected to top $1 trillion by 2025. While Walmart offers low prices on basics, Home Depot provides expertise, inventory breadth, and home services that builders need.

As a shopper, you‘ll gain outstanding project advice and find all the specialty supplies at Home Depot. For home owners and pros, it‘s the clear one-stop destination over Walmart.

IKEA – The Global Furniture Powerhouse

When it comes to home furnishings, Swedish giant IKEA is the largest retailer worldwide. Founded in 1943, IKEA now has over 435 stores across 50 countries. 2020 saw revenues of €39.6 billion.

Known for affordable, modern furniture you assemble yourself, IKEA is adored worldwide by budget-minded shoppers. IKEA‘s mammoth stores also stock housewares, decor and more. Nearly 1 billion people visit an IKEA annually!

IKEA‘s trendy designs and simple affordable approach directly compete with Walmart‘s furniture offerings. "IKEA arguably offers better design and quality than Walmart for comparable prices," wrote retail analyst Warren Shoulberg.

For furniture and home decor on a budget, you can‘t beat IKEA‘s combination of value, variety and Swedish flair. This beloved brand gives Walmart serious competition internationally in home goods.

Best Buy – Leading Electronics Authority

When it comes to personal tech and appliances, specialty retailer Best Buy is America‘s authority. Founded in 1966, Best Buy operates over 1,000 stores in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Revenues in 2020 exceeded $47 billion.

Best Buy stocks every digital gadget imaginable from smartwatches to gaming PCs. Stores also showcase the latest smartphones, 4K TVs, home theaters, and smart appliances you can try out first-hand.

This touch-and-feel experience gives Best Buy an edge over Walmart in higher-end electronics. Consultant staff offer expert advice you won‘t find in big box stores.

As a tech shopper, Best Buy‘s immense selection, competitive prices and knowledgeable staff will satisfy your inner geek in ways Walmart can‘t match. For the latest devices and appliances, you‘ll choose this specialty avenger over the everything store.

Aldi – The European Price Crusher Invading America

When it comes to thrilling discounts in grocery, European chain Aldi is expanding fast across the U.S. Founded in Germany in 1961, Aldi operates over 10,000 stores in 20 countries today.

With a fanatical focus on private label items and minimal overhead, Aldi keeps prices ridiculously low – often 30% less than leading grocers. 2020 revenues topped $109 billion globally.

"Aldi is ramping up intense price competition with Walmart," said Burt Flickinger III of retail consulting firm Strategic Resource Group. Flickinger expects Aldi to grow U.S. locations over 50% in the next five years.

As a shopper, you‘ll be amazed that milk is under $2 a gallon and avocados go for $0.45 each at Aldi. Just be prepared for a smaller selection and bring quarters for the cart! For jaw-dropping discounts, Aldi beats Walmart.

Carrefour – International Grocery Challenger

French retail group Carrefour operates over 12,000 locations in 30 countries across Europe, Asia and South America. Founded in 1959, this hypermarket giant racked up €78.6 billion in 2020 revenue.

Similar to Walmart, Carrefour stores combine groceries, clothing, home goods, electronics and more all under one roof. E-commerce sales are rapidly growing, especially during the pandemic.

In global markets, Carrefour directly challenges Walmart with its broad assortment and aggressive pricing, as well as large store footprints. "We consider Carrefour one of Walmart‘s chief international competitors," Deutsche Bank analysts noted in a 2021 report.

When traveling abroad as a shopper, you may recognize and prefer to shop at Carrefour over less familiar chains. Both frequent Europe and shop for everyday basics? This continental powerhouse could win your euros.

CVS – America‘s Leading Drugstore

For pharmacy and personal care items, CVS Health tops the market with over 9,900 retail locations across the U.S. Founded in 1892, this drugstore giant generated revenues approaching $270 billion for 2020.

CVS transformed retail healthcare with its convenient locations and friendly service. Stores reliably stock all your toiletry essentials, snacks, beverages and some groceries. CVS‘ ExtraCare rewards program boasts over 100 million active users.

With thousands more locations than Walmart pharmacies, CVS competes squarely for pharmacy market share. CVS also edges out Walmart on access and customer loyalty built from its community-focused approach.

When you need a prescription filled or last minute toiletries, you‘ll likely run into a CVS before a Walmart. Shoppers just passing through neighborhoods gravitate towards this familiar drugstore brand over big box operators.

Reliance Retail – Conquering India‘s Massive Consumer Market

With its population nearing 1.4 billion, India represents possibly retail‘s greatest untapped opportunity today. Leading the way is homegrown conglomerate Reliance Retail.

Founded in 2006 and owned by billionaire Mukesh Ambani, Reliance Retail operates over 13,000 stores across groceries, fashion, electronics, and more. For 2021, Reliance Retail revenues grew at a blistering pace of 51% to ₹1.99 trillion ($24 billion USD).

"Reliance Retail is taking India‘s retail markets by storm," said Euromonitor analyst Radhika Goel. "Their strategy of integrating brick-and-mortar with digital channels is allowing Reliance to expand aggressively."

Walmart does operate around 30 locations in India after acquiring e-commerce firm Flipkart. But Reliance Retail boasts dominant market share with its finger on the pulse of Indian consumers. You‘ll find Reliance and its affiliated brands like JioMart nearly everywhere when shopping in India.

Shufersal – Dominating Israel‘s Retail Landscape

In Israel, the largest supermarket chain is Shufersal, with a nearly 40% market share. Founded in 1958, Shufersal operates over 380 locations nationally and saw 2020 revenues of ILS 14.25 billion ($4.5 billion USD).

Shufersal competes head-to-head with the few Walmart stores in Israel. Both chains offer low prices across groceries, prepared foods, and other supermarket items.

But as a domestic brand, Shufersal enjoys stronger loyalty. Its popular loyalty program and e-commerce site capture Israeli shoppers looking for convenience and deals. With international expansion plans, Shufersal could spread its influence beyond Israel.

"Shufersal‘s dominance in Israel makes it a major challenger for any global retailer like Walmart expanding here," said J.P. Morgan analyst Brian Kalish. When shopping in the Holy Land, Shufersal is a name you‘ll soon know.

JD.com – China‘s E-Commerce King

When it comes to online retail dominance, JD.com stands atop China, the world‘s largest e-commerce market. Also called Jingdong, JD.com was founded in 1998 and recorded 2020 revenues of $114 billion.

JD sells every consumer product imaginable across home, fashion, and electronics categories. Over 550 million active customers trust JD as China‘s most reliable online retailer.

In China, JD competes fiercely with Walmart‘s developing e-commerce operations. JD‘s vast fulfillment infrastructure can deliver orders in under 20 hours across China.

Chinese online shoppers overwhelmingly prefer JD.com for authentic goods and quick delivery. "JD‘s brand equity and nationwide logistics make it nearly impossible for Walmart to displace," noted Bloomberg industry analysts.

Beyond the Top 10: More Major Chains Challenging Walmart

Walmart competes across many specialized retail segments globally. Here are some other major category rivals:

Lowe‘s – Battling Walmart in home improvement with over $89 billion in 2020 sales. Lowe‘s extensive inventory, home services, and omnichannel options cater to serious DIYers.

Auchan – France‘s largest retailer operating stores in 17 countries across Europe, Asia and Africa. Competes with Walmart on hypermarket model.

Publix – Florida-based grocery chain with over $44 billion in 2020 revenue. Publix‘s top-notch customer service makes it a preferred grocer.

Walgreens – Major pharmacy chain with over 21,000 stores and $139 billion in 2020 sales. Walgreens competes across drugstore and convenience goods.

Casino Group – Major French retailer with global presence, especially in South America. Hypermarket format takes on Walmart abroad.

Lidl – Fast-growing German discount grocer expanding across Europe and U.S. Lidl had over €125 billion in 2020 sales.

Woolworths – Leading grocer and general merchandise retailer in Australia and New Zealand. Counters Walmart‘s expansion in the region.

Ascena Retail – Women‘s apparel giant operating over 2,800 stores in U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico. Owns Ann Taylor, LOFT, and other major brands.

Canadian Tire – Iconic Canadian retailer selling automotive, home goods, apparel, and sporting goods across 500+ stores. Commands loyal regional shopper base.

The Final Tally: Walmart Competitors to Watch in 2024

Walmart is never short on rivals seeking to steal its retail crown. This exhaustive guide has covered over 20 top competitors making serious inroads against the world‘s largest company:

  • Kroger – Top U.S. grocery chain aggressively expanding digital commerce

  • Costco – Beloved membership warehouse giant known for deep discounts

  • Amazon – Leading global e-commerce disruptor with over 200 million Prime members

  • Target – Stylish big-box retailer embracing omnichannel to battle Walmart

  • Home Depot – #1 home improvement retailer offering unmatched expertise and selection

  • IKEA – International furnishing juggernaut winning on modern style and value

  • Best Buy – Electronics authority with knowledgeable staff and latest devices on display

  • Aldi – Fast-growing German discount grocer invading America with shockingly low prices

  • JD.com – China‘s top online retailer delivering speed and reliability across the massive market

  • CVS – America‘s favorite drugstore with over 9,900 convenient locations nationally

The sheer size and diversity of businesses successfully challenging Walmart is staggering. But one thing is certain – the world‘s largest retailer has no plans to relinquish its throne anytime soon. The epic battle for the future of retail will be fascinating to watch in 2024 and beyond.

Which competitor do you think poses the greatest threat to Walmart‘s dominance? Are there any serious challengers I missed? Let me know in the comments!

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