What does it take to get your products on the shelf of a store like Walmart?

1) Make sure your SER (supplier evaluation rating) meets the minimum requirements.  It predicts the likelihood that a supplier will cease business operations or become inactive over the next 12 month period. This helps show if  your company can handle a “Walmart-style” account.

2) Large companies such as Walmart, Costco, Pepsi, etc., all offer supplier diversity programs. Just being a small business can qualify you as “diverse. ” Tweet This Companies like this look for:

  • Certification through the National Minority Supplier Development Council, Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, Veteran/Disabled Veterans, LGBT
    or similar Federal, State or local government minority certification programs;
  • U.S. Citizen Ownership;
  • Company is 51% owned and operated by one or more of the eligible groups listed above;

3) It also helps if you have a history of proven successful projects and financial stability (you may be asked to provide audited financial statements and a recent Dun & Bradstreet Supplier Evaluation report).

Additionally, tons of resources for diverse businesses are available if you are trying to get your product on the shelf.  The Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO)  supports the development of strong and effective U.S. microbusiness initiatives to assist underserved entrepreneurs in starting, stabilizing, and expanding businesses. AEO encourages small business to participate in supplier diversity programs.

And as a super bonus… Walmart is currently running a “Get on the Shelf” competition where they will be featuring small businesses who submit a product video!  Go for it!


This competition gives entrepreneurs the opportunity to get their product out in the public. Entrepreneurs, business owners and inventors can enter now through July 31 by submitting a video featuring their product on Walmart’s Get on the Shelf site. The grand prize winner, based on the number of online pre-orders from customers, could potentially have their product sold in select Walmart stores.