Retail giant Walmart set a far-sighted strategy in order to open up new markets, and has invested heavily in digital transformation. In 2011, Walmart set up an independent online retail unit, and began to invest. By 2015 it was spending US$1 billion on equipment and human resources for online sales, and employing 3,600 people. Walmart set its digital strategy, broke with its old models, and linked ecommerce seamlessly to its real-world stores and warehouses. New buying functions have been developed to respond to customer needs, with more phone options and more price transparency for a better customer experience . Between 2011 and 2014, Walmart's online revenue grew by 150%. In Q1 2017, Walmart's online sales in the US were up 63% on the previous year, making Walmart America's second-largest online retailer.