M&E Daily

Wal-Mart Stores Cut DVD Display Space: WSJ

Pressing forward with a corporate initiative to reduce merchandising clutter, Wal-Mart is doing away with promotional display cases for new DVD releases, according to a Wall Street Journal report (registration required).

The report offers few specifics on how Wal-Mart’s “Project Impact,” announced late last year, affects DVD and Blu-ray retail, not to mention music and videogame merchandising. But the past two years have seen some obvious shifts in strategy.

For one, most of Wal-Mart’s 3,500-plus stores have a Redbox kiosk installed somewhere near their entrance. Individual outlets have begun to use free movie rentals as a promotional lure for shoppers.

In addition, Wal-Mart has put much of its entertainment merchandising efforts into exclusive deals and store-within-a-store concepts involving other products. Last October, the retailer marketed an exclusive AC/DC album from Columbia Records together with MTV Games’ Rock Band 2, T-shirts, and other apparel. This month, stores have targeted moms with “family night centers” that offer discount Disney DVDs alongside board games from Hasbro, Doritos snacks, and Pepsi beverages. And next week, stores will open “KISS Korners” in electronics departments and Halloween aisles, selling an exclusive three-disc CD/DVD set from the band along with branded T-shirts, Mr. Potato Head toys, fleece blankets, M&M candies, wigs and makeup kits, and last but not least, discount catalog CDs.