Walmart looks to draw shoppers to website — and away from rival Amazon — with a growing digital marketplace that now includes Moosejaw

Key Points
  • Beginning on Monday, Moosejaw will have its own shop on Walmart's website.
  • The brand, which sells outdoor gear and apparel, was bought by Walmart last year.
  • Walmart is adding more brands and more items to its website, creating its own version of an online shopping mall to compete with Amazon.
Source: Moosejaw

Walmart, already the nation's largest retailer, is trying to create a massive, digital marketplace to draw more shoppers to its website — and away from its biggest rival, Amazon.

Starting Monday, edgy outdoor-gear company Moosejaw will be featured on Walmart's website with its own, online destination. Purchased by Walmart in 2017, Moosejaw's assortment of merchandise includes items from brands like Patagonia and Canada Goose — a departure from what many customers have come to expect from Walmart and its everyday low prices.

The Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer has been branching into higher-end goods. It's acquired men's apparel company Bonobos and women's fashion and accessories company ModCloth in recent years. Moosejaw's online shop also builds on Walmart's recent deal with Lord & Taylor, which created a fashion destination on with more premium brands.

Moosejaw, like the other companies Walmart has acquired of late, targets millennial shoppers, which is something Walmart has said it wants to do more of, especially as that younger generation has greater spending power.

The new landing page for Moosejaw on will include "thousands of items" from premium outdoor brands like Deuter, Craghoppers and First Ascent by Eddie Bauer, the companies said Monday in a blog post. It will also sell Moosejaw-branded clothing, including its jackets and other camping gear, and the plan is to add more Moosejaw products over time.

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"We're introducing a completely new, outdoor specialty assortment that hasn't been available to Walmart customers in the past," Moosejaw CEO Eoin Comerford said in a statement. "It's kind of an honor, since this is the first time that Walmart is creating an online store on its flagship site curated by one of its acquired specialty retailers."

With Amazon also adding more brands to its website, the two companies have been competing to offer a wider assortment of items to shoppers. Some brands working with Amazon today include Chico's FAS and Calvin Klein. Both companies are viewed by retail analysts as investing heavily in the apparel category in particular within the past few months.

In addition to its Lord & Taylor deal, Walmart also recently announced a new apparel line with Ellen DeGeneres, it launched a new home brand called Allswell and it continues to build out its assortment on, though the website remains separate from even post acquisition. Walmart acquired Jet in 2016.

"The goal is to provide a destination for outdoor enthusiasts where Moosejaw pulls the best outdoor brands from many sources," Comerford said about the latest brand partnership.

With more and more retail sales moving online in the U.S., many companies are realizing how important it is to bulk up their e-commerce platforms. The merchandise from Moosejaw won't be available in Walmart stores, a spokeswoman told CNBC.

Walmart shares have climbed more than 20 percent over the past 12 months, bringing the retailer's market cap to roughly $280 billion. That compares with Amazon, which has a market cap of more than $928 billion, while its stock is up more than 100 percent from a year ago.

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