- Amazon Key, the online retailer's in-home delivery service launched last November, is a wildly unpopular concept so far. In a recent survey, 75.9% of women said they were unwilling to use it, as did 60.9% of men — a 68.8% average for all, according to a study by InsuranceQuotes. The numbers are not much better for Prime members, with only 34.3% saying they are willing to use Amazon Key. This contrasts with 63.7% who trust Amazon in general, versus 53% for Google and 27.9% for Facebook.
- Almost 80% said they are afraid that Amazon Key couriers will steal something from their homes (80.4% of women and 78.4% of men). A breach of privacy is another major concern (76.9% of women said so and 69.9% of men), as well as malicious exploitation of Amazon Key (61.8% of women and 56.2% of men).
- Amazon Key is intended to help solve a big problem for the retailer, as more than 20% of Americans had a delivered package stolen. The number is greater for Prime members, who tend to order more frequently from Amazon.
Theft of packages and keeping food products fresh and frozen are two major concerns for home delivery services of online retail, but new solutions that involve allowing authorized personnel into the home have not impressed consumers so far. Security concerns remain top-of-mind, according to this study.
Amazon is not alone in seeking access to homes. Walmart has partnered with Deliv and August Locks, a "smart locks" company, in testing a service that delivers food products inside customers' homes, putting away fresh and frozen products in refrigerators and freezers when people are not home.
Although this addresses a long-standing obstacle to home delivery — how to keep fresh and frozen food cold — it likely faces the same kinds of discomfort among consumers as Amazon Key does.
Amazon Prime members in 37 cities can sign up for the program, which involves the purchase of a $250 kit that includes an app, an indoor security camera and a smart lock, according to Quoted, a publication of The Zebra, a car insurance comparison site.
There are three major concerns about Amazon Key, Quoted said. One is theft. Because while the camera, lock and app can keep couriers from stealing on the delivery trip, it can't keep them from looking around with an eye to a future theft. Another concern is pets, who might either escape or harass the courier.
Lastly, hacks are also a major concern. Hacks, too, could ultimately lead to theft, should hackers prove able to disable the security camera.
Amazon has other options for secure package delivery, both involving pickup. One is at dedicated Amazon pickup locations, which are actual store fronts. Another is Amazon Locker in other retailers' locations, including 7-Eleven and, following last year's acquisition, Whole Foods Markets. Walmart, too, is expanding grocery pickup to many of its approximately 5,000 U.S. locations. And retailers can also use parcel boxes with major carriers.