Walmart joins metaverse bandwagon with virtual worlds on Roblox
Multinational retail giant Walmart has made its metaverse aspirations known with two new experiences on the online gaming platform Roblox. The virtual worlds dubbed 'Walmart Land' and 'Universe of Play' target younger audiences. Roblox players can collect virtual merchandise, attend a music festival with artists, earn toys from a blimp, and win fashion competitions, among others, in the two spaces.
Why does this story matter?
- The pull of the metaverse bandwagon is hard to resist these days. It is considered the next great frontier to be explored.
- Many businesses fear that if they don't make a move now, they may miss out on the next revolution. Walmart clearly doesn't want that.
- For a company that just took its first step in metaverse, Walmart's worlds are rather immersive and detailed.
Walmart is trying new ways to reach customers
Walmart's entry into Roblox should be looked at through the prism of the pandemic. The pandemic brought several changes to shopping habits. The company is, therefore, experimenting with new ways to reach customers, who are closer than ever to the virtual world. It has tried other virtual tech in the past, including AI-powered virtual try-on, shoppable live streaming events on TikTok, and more.
Walmart is the biggest retailer on Roblox
Walmart sees Roblox as a testing ground for its future metaverse ambitions. William White, Walmart's chief marketing officer, said, "This is another step of reaching our customers in unexpected ways and in the places where they're spending their time." Although there are other companies like Nike and Ralph Lauren on Roblox, Walmart is the biggest fish yet on the platform.
There is Netflix Trivia and music concert
In Walmart Land, players will find immersive experiences such as an amusement park with beaches, Ferris wheels, and more. At the central hub, they can collect 'verch' or virtual merchandise and earn prizes from a blimp. There are also fashion competitions, dance-off challenges, Netflix Trivia hosted by Noah Schnapp, and a concert featuring YouTube stars Madison Beer, Kane Brown, and YUNGBLUD.
Universe of Play targets much younger players
Separately, Walmart's Universe of Play targets rather young players. It has popular kids' shows such as PAW Patrol and activities like hunting for missing dinosaur eggs, finding a pet chicken, creating a Magic Maxie, and more. Players can earn prizes from a blimp here too. There is also a track in the sky on which players can ride a razor scooter.
Roblox has over 52 million users
Roblox has over 52 million users and a market value of about $21.2 billion. The platform is designed for players aged nine and above. In-app purchases are the platform's main source of revenue. Players can find Walmart's virtual world on Roblox.com. It can be opened on Xbox, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PCs, Mac, Amazon devices, and gadgets running on iOS, as well as Android.