Shopping Discussion

Inventory Checker tool for Walmart/CanadianTire/BestBuy B&M stores

  • Last Updated:
  • Jan 17th, 2019 11:49 am
[OP]
Deal Addict
Aug 3, 2008
2127 posts
2064 upvotes
Canada

Inventory Checker tool for Walmart/CanadianTire/BestBuy B&M stores

Hi there,
I recently created a tool to check local inventory status and price of some B&M stores using similar requests that their websites do, but it provides more results at once and makes it easier to find a product at a better possible price. While I made it for my personal use as nothing similar was available anywhere else, I thought I share it with the RFD community.

I already posted links to it in some Hot Deals threads, but thought I create a separate post here with a little list of features and where people could leave comments and suggestions.

Walmart:
  • Check price and inventory status using UPC code (can be obtained on the walmart.ca, receipt or in store by looking at the barcode/tag). Product page might have 2 UPC listed, enter the last one which is just 1 digit shorter. Same with barcode from the box you may have to skip thr last digit. It will also try to find product information using UPC on the walmart.ca and will display the first available result. It is not guaranteed that this information will match actual product with supplied UPC.
  • Mobile devices can use barcode scanner to automatically scan UPC codes and check stock info in walmarts nearby. Handy if you're shopping around and want to check if any walmart carry particular item or want to quickly compare prices while at walmart. The button to start scanning will be displayed next to UPC field. It will ask for permission to use your camera and will start barcode scan. To cancel scanning just tap the screen.
  • Search by keyword, same as if you search on walmart.ca. Will display results with online price and stock info that you can click and also get local stock around specified location. Search results can be sorted via an option (before clicking 'Search')
  • Check by Walmart SKU. It will try to get UPC using the SKU and then search for stock info.
  • Deals! Lists recently found products in stores with discounts.
    • Can include prices from stores where item is OOS
    • Can only search deals in stores specified by location setting
    • Sort by more recently updated, max discount, max/min regular price
  • Location: can either leave blank and it will try to use your browser location or enter city/postal code/address.
  • Stores: number of stores to look for around specified location. Right now there is no limit and technically it's possible to search across whole Canada.
  • You can hide stores in results table where a product is not sold and stock information is not available.
  • Results table can be sorted by any column and filtered by price and stock.
  • Walmart.ca Daily/Weekly Price Drops shows products that are discounted today and available to buy from walmart.ca. The difference is shown not with the 'regular' price, but with yesterday/weekly price. Clicking on the item will also show availability and price in stores near the location.
  • Online price history chart when mouse over an item in the Price Drops or Search Results area. On touch devices it works when you tap and hold. History is updated automatically several times a day for those items that ever were searched/requested.
  • Store price/status history chart when mouse over price in the Stores Inventory results grid. This history is only updated when someone requests the info for that store.
Advantages:
  • walmart.ca does not allow to check price and stock status for every item (just for some, where 'Buy in store' button is active). Here it allows checking any item, even if it's no longer listed online, just provide a proper SKU number.
  • walmart.ca limit your search to 3 stores
  • walmart.ca has a bug in the system and displays correct information only for the 1st store out of those 3, other 2 stores just copy 1st store info.
  • Online search results display how many items are available in stock, which is not shown on walmart.ca. I have no idea how accuarate that information is though.
  • Online price history chart
Drawbacks:
  • Stock availability information is not real-time, lagging probably day or two. Nothing I can do about it, it is what is given by the walmart server. Price appears to be correct.
  • Not much filtering of search results.
ToDos:
  • Add barcode scanner to automatically scan UPC codes and check stock info Done
  • Add filtering/ordering search results Done
  • Add price history tracking similar to 3camels. Already saving data once a day for items that ever appeared in search results (no time machine though to go back). Also saving store prices changes when they are checked (no automatic updates as it's just too much) Done

CanadianTire:
  • Check price and inventory number using Product #(can be obtained on the canadiantire.ca or in store by looking at the price tag) It should include at least first 7 digits from a product # that usually is provided in a format similar to xxx-xxxx-x. The last digit and dashes are optional, but you can just copy the number as it provided on the website.
  • Search by keyword, same as if you search on canadiantire.ca. Will display results with online price that you can click and get local price and stock numbers. Search results can be sorted similarly to what canadiantire.ca offers.
  • Location: can either leave blank and it will try to use your browser location or enter city/postal code/address.
  • Store distance: search radius in km for stores around specified location. Right now there is no limit and technically it's possible to search across whole Canada.
  • Can choose stores from which provinces to search. Usefull when shipping is available and in-store price is the same as online.
  • You can hide stores in results table where a product is not sold and stock information is not available or stores where item is OOS.
  • Results table can be sorted by any column.
  • I don't store any information, everything is retrieved directly from canadiantire.ca.
Advantages:
  • canadiantire.ca does not show price information for each particular store, my tool does.
  • No limit on number of stores to scan.
  • Some store-specific clearance and sale prices are not published online. I was able to get the same info as what store kiosk does and you can easily compare prices. I found that if there is no chainwide sale, prices might be quite different in canadiantire stores across the same city.
Drawbacks:
  • Search sometimes does not give any results, but tries to redirect to some canadiantire page (usually when you enter particular brand name) Some redirects(like 'lego') I was able to overcome by specifying the same keyword twice but some still try to redirect no matter what.
  • No filtering search results. Might add later.
  • When search item contains multiple product #'s (for choosing colors, size, etc) it will only show the first one. You can still lookup particular product # and use it instead to get stock info.
ToDos:
  • It's possible to automatically get Product# using UPC, so I will add check using UPC&barcode scanner.
  • Fix issue with multiple product #'s by displaying a dropdown list in search result item.
  • Add search filtering

BestBuy and IKEA checkers are similar to what their corresponding websites are offering. There is no per-store price info. The only advantage is that you can check many stores at once.
I tried to do similar checkers for HomeDepot and the Source, but it's more complicated and they don't seem to allow sending stock requests directly. At least I couldn't find an easy way by pretending to be a browser.

I also created Google Chrome plugin that when you browse walmart.ca, canadiantire.ca and bestbuy.ca it adds a 'StockTrack' button to open stocktrack.ca with the UPC of a browsed item.


General ToDo:
Let me know if you have any questions on how to use this tool or any suggestions.
I do this in my spare time and I'm not a professional web developer, so be easy :)
Cheers!

Update 2018/10/18:
  • Mobile devices can use barcode scanner to automatically scan UPC codes and check stock info in walmarts nearby. The button to start scanning will be displayed next to UPC field. It will ask for permission to use your camera and will start barcode scan. To cancel scanning just tap the screen.
Update 2018/11/01:
  • Check by Walmart SKU. It will try to get UPC using the SKU and then search for stock info.
  • BestBuy checker stopped working so I removed it altogether. I find it useless and don't have time & will to investigate.
Update 2018/11/05:
  • Deals! Lists recently found products with discounts.
Update 2018/11/09:
  • Added some filtering and ordering of product in Deals search.
  • Can include prices from stores where item is OOS
  • Can only search deals in stores specified by location setting
  • Sort by more recently updated, max discount, max/min regular price
Update 2018/11/10:
  • Page address is modified when checking for product to include upc/product number in a path to load results automatically if page reloads. You can also copy and share that address with someone.
Update 2018/11/16:
  • Added 'keyword' option to Walmart Deals. Can specify any word that must appear in the product name.
Update 2018/11/19:
  • Added filters to Walmart search. Can only show products that are sold by Walmart and change result sorting.
Update 2018/11/22:
  • Added 'Walmart Daily Price Drops' which shows products that were discounted today and available to buy from walmart.ca. Clicking on the item will also show availability and price in stores near the location. I'm only tracking items that were ever searched through my tool
Update 2018/11/25:
  • Added 'Weekly Price Drops' after noticing there were no daily drops at some point on Sunday. It will show items which current price is lowest over the last 7 days and how much it dropped from the highest.
Update 2018/12/05:
  • Added online price history chart when mouse over an item in the Price Drops area for Walmart. On touch devices it works when you tap and hold.
Update 2018/12/10:
  • Added store price/status history chart when mouse over price in the Stores Inventory results grid.
Update 2019/01/08 for Canadian Tire:
  • Can choose in which provinces stores to search. Still need to use distance, but can put a large number like 5000 if you want to search whole province. Usefull when shipping is available and in-store price is the same as online (not always the case though)
  • Can hide stores without stock
Update 2019/01/16:
  • Created Google Chrome plugin that when you browse walmart.ca adds a button near 'Buy In-Store' to open stocktrack.ca with the UPC of a browsed item. Will add support for canadiantire.ca and bestbuy.ca soon.
Update 2019/01/17:
Last edited by seafish on Jan 17th, 2019 11:50 am, edited 36 times in total.
132 replies
Sr. Member
May 1, 2018
557 posts
266 upvotes
Vancouver
I saw it posted in the Walmart Monopoly Mario Edition thread and thought this was a neat tool.

Do you think a future goal would be doing stock for grocery stores and supermarkets like Superstore, Save On Foods etc? Even Costco maybe?
Deal Addict
Aug 11, 2011
3170 posts
6693 upvotes
>er YEG pi-r-sq'd
I've used the tool a few times since I've seen it in a couple of threads and wanted to say thank you kindly for creating and sharing it with the RFD community @seafish.

Based on the number of threads for Home Depot and The Source, I was going to suggest those 2 but I see you've already looked into them based on your comments in the main post.

If they are not as complicated like HD and TS to add, I too would like to request RCSS and Save On Foods as well as No Frills and London Drugs for us westerners. May as well ask now before the east start asking. :D
Deal Guru
Jul 19, 2012
13168 posts
3458 upvotes
Montreal
You should get some affiliate links going to help pay the server/development costs.

If I find a site useful, I have no problem with it, and most people don't either.
FourDollarama Shut Down My Thread!
Sr. Member
Jul 13, 2007
725 posts
247 upvotes
Toronto
Looks nice.

I checked an item I bought recently (a car battery): 83996058149 https://www.walmart.ca/en/ip/everstart- ... 0195362492 and every result in Toronto says "NotSold", but it is a Buy In Store item. Probably nothing you can do, but ??? why it doesn't work on your site.
Are you sure you wish to carry out this operation? You betcha.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Aug 3, 2008
2127 posts
2064 upvotes
Canada
HammerRFDer wrote:
Oct 12th, 2018 10:23 pm
Looks nice.

I checked an item I bought recently (a car battery): 83996058149 https://www.walmart.ca/en/ip/everstart- ... 0195362492 and every result in Toronto says "NotSold", but it is a Buy In Store item. Probably nothing you can do, but ??? why it doesn't work on your site.
You actually need to enter the other UPC code that is listed on product page on the bottom, it's similar but 1 digit less 8399605814
Also, appears that same with barcode, you need to enter 1 digit less in the checker then on barcode from the box (not sure if always or sometimes)
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Apr 9, 2006
8386 posts
9196 upvotes
GT-EH
Came here to say thanks for this awesome little website you created. ;)
I just like to collect things! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Behold, true glory. #PCMasterRace!
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Nov 24, 2012
5264 posts
1475 upvotes
Space
Cool website but I find that it’s not very accurate, atleast when I used it. I looked up some oil, showed as available, went to the store and it was SO (0 stock ). I’ll try it again though.
Sr. Member
User avatar
Oct 26, 2010
893 posts
1170 upvotes
Logged in just to give you a thumb-up thank you :)
[OP]
Deal Addict
Aug 3, 2008
2127 posts
2064 upvotes
Canada
Solsearchin1 wrote:
Oct 17th, 2018 11:29 pm
Cool website but I find that it’s not very accurate, atleast when I used it. I looked up some oil, showed as available, went to the store and it was SO (0 stock ). I’ll try it again though.
Yes, online inventory is not accurate. As stated in my disclaimer, it is almost never accurate for big stores due to theft, loss, and other circumstances. It is also usually outdated by several days.
I 'tested' CT inventory lag by buying CIL Fall fertilizer yesterday afternoon, and the stock number was indeed updated the next morning accurately.
Sr. Member
May 1, 2018
557 posts
266 upvotes
Vancouver
Solsearchin1 wrote:
Oct 17th, 2018 11:29 pm
Cool website but I find that it’s not very accurate, atleast when I used it. I looked up some oil, showed as available, went to the store and it was SO (0 stock ). I’ll try it again though.
Even if you ask staff clerk to check up stock on an item whether in their own store or other stores, their system is not 100% accurate either. The most common ones are those that tend to show 1 in stock but really, it could be anywhere in the store or it'll show 1 in the system to indicate to other stores that there most likely is none at the store.
Member
Jun 29, 2017
237 posts
484 upvotes
This is amazing!

I noticed when searching canadian tire for Ottawa for a cooler. 037-0124-0, that the prices from dont match what I see on the website. For example, bells corners shows $224.99 on the canadian tire website, but your page shows as $166. Any idea why?

Is it because of this: "Some store-specific clearance and sale prices are not published online. I was able to get the same info as what store kiosk does and you can easily compare prices. I found that if there is no chainwide sale, prices might be quite different in canadiantire stores across the same city."
[OP]
Deal Addict
Aug 3, 2008
2127 posts
2064 upvotes
Canada
robfun wrote:
Oct 20th, 2018 8:06 pm
This is amazing!

I noticed when searching canadian tire for Ottawa for a cooler. 037-0124-0, that the prices from dont match what I see on the website. For example, bells corners shows $224.99 on the canadian tire website, but your page shows as $166. Any idea why?

Is it because of this: "Some store-specific clearance and sale prices are not published online. I was able to get the same info as what store kiosk does and you can easily compare prices. I found that if there is no chainwide sale, prices might be quite different in canadiantire stores across the same city."
Yes, CT web-site does not show store-specific sales and clearance prices in most cases(probably so that people don't try to price match store to store). My tool shows same prices that are instore. The number of items available might not be accurate though.
Sr. Member
User avatar
Dec 9, 2007
959 posts
382 upvotes
Cool! What are the chances that Sportchek and Atmosphere are added since I believe they run a similar online system as to Canadian TIre?

Thanks for what you are doing.

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