NEW YORK -- Wal-Mart shoppers now will be able to pay cash for online purchases.
The world's largest retailer on Thursday said it will allow shoppers to buy items on Walmart.com and then pay for them with cash at all of its 3,800 U.S. stores. The discounter says it's the first major retailer to offer shoppers the opportunity to purchase online without a bank account, or credit, debit or prepaid card.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is trying to cater more to its customers who don't have access to those financial services. After all, only about 15 percent of Wal-Mart's its transactions are paid using a credit card.
The company, based in Bentonville, Ark., the initiative was well received when it tested it in a few stores in various parts of the country over the past six weeks.
"We are going to touch a segment of the American public who hasn't been able to participate online without going through a lot of hoops," said Joel Anderson, president and CEO of Walmart.com.
It works like this: Customers go to the website to select the item and place an order. During checkout, they can select the "cash" option and their shipping preference. The shopper then has 48 hours to take the printed order confirmation to the cash register at a Wal-Mart store. Once the order is paid, the customers can either arrange to have the items shipped to a store for free or to another address for a fee.
By ANNE D'INNOCENZIO, AP Retail Writer