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How to Get Approval to Sell On A Step-by-Step Guide

Geri Mileva
June 4, 2024
June 4, 2024
How to Get Approval to Sell On

The retail world has changed a lot these past few years, moving from traditional brick-and-mortar stores to the ever-convenient online shops and apps. Consumers can now enjoy an abundance of options, with prominent e-commerce platforms including Amazon, eBay, Etsy, and Walmart leading the charge.

Walmart, in particular, has become a giant in the online market. In just 2023, Walmart made online sales totaling up to $53.4 billion in the US alone. This massive reach translates to a wide pool of customers for third-party sellers to tap into.

Thinking about selling on but unsure how to begin? This guide walks you through the step-by-step process of getting the approval to join Walmart Marketplace.

Introduction to Walmart Marketplace

Walmart’s online Marketplace is one of the biggest e-commerce platforms in the world, with over 250 million weekly visits

In its traditional retail model, Walmart sources and sells all products. In the online Marketplace, however, independent third-party sellers are allowed to market and sell their products to millions of Walmart customers.

This model helps sellers connect with a much wider audience. It also increases sales by leveraging Walmart's reputation and traffic.

Why Sell on Walmart Marketplace?

Walmart Marketplace may seem similar to other major platforms like Amazon and eBay at first glance. Yet, there are some significant differences that make it unique.

For example, Amazon and eBay have less strict application requirements, while Walmart maintains rigorous vetting and approval. Although this might seem challenging for new sellers, it does enhance the platform's trustworthiness and helps maintain its high-quality branding. This can be beneficial to existing sellers who want to improve their reputation as well.

Additionally, Walmart Marketplace has a simple fee structure. Sellers don’t pay monthly subscription fees. Instead, Walmart charges a referral fee on each sale that can vary according to the product's category.

Most of these fees usually fall between 6% and 20% of the selling price. It's a model that benefits sellers, as it reduces upfront costs and keeps expenses aligned with performance. This makes Walmart Marketplace a business-friendly place for most small and large business enterprises.

Step-by-Step Guide to Getting Approval to Sell on Walmart Marketplace

Walmart Marketplace has a notoriously complex approval process, which happens to be one of the first challenges sellers can face on the platform. 

Don't worry—we’ve got your back. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how you can get approval to sell on Walmart Marketplace.

Step 1: Meet the Criteria

Walmart prioritizes customer satisfaction and service more than anything else, and Walmart only approves vendors who can meet the high standards expected by their customers.

To be eligible as a Walmart Marketplace seller, you’ll need to meet the following criteria:

  • Your business must be registered in the US, with US-based warehouses.
  • You have a proven track record as an experienced and successful e-commerce seller.
  • You have a diverse product catalog.
  • You have a strong history of good customer service.
  • You offer fast shipping and competitive pricing.

Step 2: Prepare the Required Documents

Once you meet the criteria for approval, it’s time to prepare the required documents. Here’s a quick list of what you need to prepare:

  • US Business Tax ID. Required for tax purposes and used to verify that your business is legal and legitimate.
  • W8 or W9 tax forms. Required for tax reporting and compliance with IRS regulations.
  • US business and warehouse addresses. Your company and warehouse must be based in the US to meet Walmart’s location requirements.
  • EIN Verification Letter. Issued by the Department of Treasury, this letter verifies your Employer Identification Number (EIN) and business operations in the US.
  • Product category and catalog information. Details about the different types of products you plan to sell, their categories, and your product catalog size. Make sure none of your products fall under Walmart’s prohibited products list.

Step 3: Register to Apply

register on Walmart and apply

With all the required documents on hand, it’s time to apply to Walmart Marketplace. Here are the steps.

  1. Visit the Walmart Marketplace website. Go to the Walmart Marketplace website and click on the “Join Marketplace” button located in the top right corner of the homepage.
  1. Complete the company registration form. Fill out the form with your company details and upload the necessary documents.
  1. Provide detailed product and integration information. Enter information about the products you intend to sell. This includes categories, catalog size, and how you plan to integrate your product listings with Walmart’s system.
  1. Fill out shipping and operations details. Provide information on your shipping methods, warehouse addresses, and operational details.
  1. Review and submit the application. Carefully review all the information you’ve entered so far. Double-check to see if all documents were correctly uploaded and that the details are accurate before you submit.

After submitting the form, check your inbox under the email address you used to sign up. You should see an email from Walmart with a link that says, “Verify My Account.” The link expires in 24 hours, so make sure you click it and verify your account within that time.

If you don't find that email, check your spam folder or request a new one. Unfortunately, if you still can't find that email after trying these solutions, your application likely didn’t go through, and you'll have to start from the beginning.

Step 4: Wait for Approval

The waiting stage of your application process has three phases. 

1. Review

On average, Walmart takes 2 to 4 weeks to review and process your application.

Within this time frame, Walmart’s team and the corresponding verification team will thoroughly review your application. They will check the details you provided not only to make sure you're compliant but also to see if you match the platform.

2. Follow-ups

Occasionally, Walmart may need some additional information or clarification from you.

Be sure you’re able to respond in time with the necessary information to avoid delays. Follow-ups can include questions about your business operations, details of your products, or even requests for supporting documentation.

3. Notification

After Walmart is done reviewing your application, you’ll get notified of the results via email.

If you’re approved, further instructions on setting up your Seller Center account and beginning your sales journey on Walmart Marketplace may also be included in this email.

The best way to reduce any delays in the process is to make sure that all the information you submit is accurate. And, of course, it’s always good to remain on standby in case they ask for a follow-up.

What Happens After I Get Approved to Sell on

After you get your approval email, you can now start selling on Walmart Marketplace. Remember, before you can start listing your products, you’ll have to do a couple of things first, like creating your seller account, verifying your business details, and setting up your payment and shipping details.

For more information on how to completely set up your seller account, be sure to read our full guide on how to sell on Walmart.

Is There a Guaranteed Way to Become a Walmart Marketplace Seller?

As of this writing, there's no known way to guarantee your approval to sell on Walmart Marketplace. The ability to discern trustworthy sellers is a point of pride for Walmart, so it's understandable that it only wants sellers that meet and exceed its set criteria.

Tips to Getting Approved to Sell on Walmart Marketplace

You can do a few things to get closer to approval. Here are our top tips to improve your chances of getting approved to sell on the Walmart Marketplace.

Tip #1: Showcase Your E-commerce Success

It's important that you have a proven track record of being a trusted online seller. A study conducted on eBay auctions showed that buyers tend to gravitate towards sellers with a higher reputation rating than those who aren’t rated as high. 

As mentioned, Walmart cares greatly about maintaining its high-quality branding. So, it only accepts established sellers who have proven their credibility. 

To increase your chances, try highlighting your past achievements and experience in the e-commerce niche in your application. Of course, if you don’t have any experience selling online yet, you won't have anything to highlight.

Luckily, creating accounts with other platforms like Amazon, Etsy, or Shopify is simple. These sites have a more lenient process for new sellers. 

Tip #2: Don’t Sell Prohibited Products

A list of products on Walmart's Prohibited Products Policy shows which items are not allowed to be sold on the platform. 

Selling any of these items can get you automatically rejected. The list includes hazardous materials, alcohol, certain types of food, and offensive items.

Tip #3: Provide Comprehensive Business Information

Right from the start, you should include everything there is to know about your business.

A proactive approach reduces back-and-forth communication and speeds up the review process. After all, if you have any gaps in your application, you might be asked to follow up. Multiply that scenario a few times, and it can significantly delay the process.

When registering to apply, we recommend using your business’s domain email as your email address. This boosts your credibility as an established business. It also shows Walmart that you’re serious about your branding.

Tip #4: Show Excellent Customer Service

Walmart likes businesses that can excel in the customer service department. The company prioritizes customer satisfaction above all else, so make sure you appeal to that. 

All the positive reviews past customers have given you should also be included in your application. Make sure to highlight your business’s fast response times and efficient problem-solving skills.

Tip #5: Offer Competitive Pricing and Fast Shipping

Emphasize your ability to offer competitively priced products with fast and reliable shipping. 

Sellers who can meet their high standards for pricing and fulfillment are naturally preferred by Walmart. By showing off your strategy for pricing and logistics, you’d be proving to Walmart that you are, in fact, a great fit for their marketplace.

What to Do If Your Walmart Marketplace Application is Denied

Sometimes, Walmart may reject your application even if you’ve submitted every requirement correctly. Here’s what you can do if your application to Walmart Marketplace doesn’t get approved.

1. Review your application

You can review your application to see if there’s anything you missed. Maybe you forgot to include past customer reviews, or maybe you didn’t set your pricing correctly based on competitive market pricing. Understanding where your application may have fallen short is an important step in making necessary improvements.

2. Revise and appeal

Once you’ve determined where the issues lie, you can now revise your application before sending a letter of appeal. The appeal could include your updated business information, proof that you’re complying with Walmart's policies, or links or screenshots to your improved product listings.

With this letter, head over to Walmart’s Seller Help page and click the “Appeal application decision” button. Take note that you have to be logged in to do this.

How to Improve Your Chances After Getting Denied

If your application is still denied after this, you may want to try again next time. Here are three things you can do to improve your chances.

1. Improve Your E-commerce Profile

You can increase your chances of getting approved to sell on Walmart Marketplace by strengthening your e-commerce presence, like building a verifiable track record on other online selling platforms such as Amazon, Shopify, or eBay.

Our best tips for improving your e-commerce profile would be to collect more positive reviews and to make sure that your performance metrics on that specific platform remain high.

You can also expand your product catalog, as Walmart likes it when sellers have a diverse range of products.

2. Explore Alternative Platforms

While working on your Walmart reapplication, consider expanding your sales to other marketplaces like Amazon or eBay. This doesn’t just help build your reputation, but it can also help you further grow your business in the meantime.

3. Seek Assistance

If you’re unsure where to start, you can use marketplace management tools like Threecolts to improve your existing e-commerce presence.

By helping you optimize your seller accounts on other platforms, these tools can make you appear more credible the next time you decide to send another application to Walmart Marketplace.

8 Best Practices When Selling on Walmart

Getting the approval to sell on Walmart Marketplace is already difficult enough, so if you get approved, it's only natural that you want to stay on the platform as long as possible. Here are eight tips and tricks to help you succeed in that goal.

1. Improve Your Product Listings

If you want to stand out, your product listings need to shine.

Images should be high-quality and true to life, and descriptions should be detailed and accurate. Meanwhile, relevant keywords should always be included to maintain your listing's visibility in search results.

Keep in mind that the better your listing, the easier it is for customers to find your products—and the more credible you’ll appear, too.

2. Encourage Customer Reviews

A 2023 survey had some pretty interesting revelations about how online shoppers saw customer reviews:

  • 90.6% of online shoppers read reviews.
  • 63.3% always read reviews before purchasing products.
  • 91.1% considered the experiences of past customers via their reviews to decide if they’ll make the purchase or not.

Even without the survey data, it’s hard to deny the importance of customer reviews. Not only do they build trust among potential consumers and boost conversion rates, but they also significantly influence potential buyers—especially if they’re positive.

If you want to collect more customer reviews for your online store, one way to do it is to follow up with customers after the purchase is complete.

Usually, just reminding them is enough to get them to leave an honest review. If it doesn't work, you can use incentives in the form of promo codes or discount codes to sweeten the deal.

3. Utilize Walmart Advertising

utilize Walmart advertising

Take advantage of Walmart’s numerous advertising options.

Walmart offers plenty of advertising choices, from in-store display ads to sponsored ads. Other forms include sponsored brands, products, and videos. You can even create campaigns that drive targeted traffic to your products.

That said, remember that ad keywords should be chosen wisely, and monitor their performance regularly to help maximize ROI, regardless of which type you choose.

4. Guarantee Compliance

Compliance with Walmart’s policies is absolutely important.

Walmart takes its Prohibited Products Policy seriously. If you even try selling any of the items on that list, you can face penalties or, worse, an account suspension.

5. Strive to Win the Buy Box

The Buy Box is a feature that highlights a specific seller's offer for a product when many sellers list the same item.

To win the Buy Box, you need to prove that you’re a cut above the rest. This involves offering competitive pricing, ensuring fast and reliable shipping, maintaining high customer ratings, and keeping your stock levels sufficient to meet demand.

6. Maintain High Performance Standards

Walmart values sellers who deliver top-notch service. This means keeping your on-time shipment rates high and your refunds and cancellations low. You need to consistently provide excellent customer service to maintain a good standing on the platform.

7. Keep Your Inventory Updated

Accurate inventory management is important when you’re running an online store. Selling items you no longer have can lead to disgruntled customers and poor reviews.

If you regularly update your stock levels, though, you’ll be able to know the moment you run out of stock. This has two benefits: it keeps your business running smoothly and alerts you that you need to restock.

If you need help keeping track of your products, you can use Threecolts Walmart Seller Tools to manage your inventory and improve your overall business operations.

8. Maintain Competitive Pricing

Competitive pricing isn’t just a good look for your Walmart Marketplace application—it’s also crucial for the rest of your Walmart journey. Research your competitors and set prices that attract customers while still providing a good margin for your business. Don’t hesitate to adjust prices as needed to stay competitive. 

You can also use a tool like DataSpark to help you develop a data-backed approach to your pricing strategy.

Increase Your Walmart Sales with Marketplace Management Software

Venturing into Walmart Marketplace is a great opportunity to expand your business and reach millions of new customers. As one of the largest and most trusted retail platforms, Walmart provides unparalleled visibility and access to a vast customer base.

The best part? You can use software and tools like Threecolts to make the experience much smoother. With these tools in your arsenal, optimizing your listings, managing your inventory, and improving your regular operations can be made more efficient.

To help you in your journey as a successful Walmart seller, check out our articles on how to contact Walmart customer service, Walmart Marketplace Tools, and more.

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