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04/28/2021

Amazon Surpasses Walmart in the Battle to Deliver Groceries to Garages

Jamie Grill-Goodman
Senior Editor
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a person sitting next to a window
Amazon has expanded its Key by Amazon In-Garage Grocery Delivery service to more than 5,000 U.S. cities and towns, and millions of eligible Prime members.

Amazon is going all in on garage grocery delivery, surpassing the scope of Walmart’s ongoing test of in-home and garage deliveries.

The retailer has expanded its Key by Amazon In-Garage Grocery Delivery service, which allows for Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market groceries to be delivered inside garages, to be available everywhere grocery delivery from Amazon is available. The expansion brings the service to more than 5,000 U.S. cities and towns, and millions of eligible Prime members.

Amazon originally launched Key In-Garage Grocery Delivery in five cities last November. Walmart launched its similar InHome Delivery service in 2019 to customers in Pittsburgh, PA, Vero Beach, FL, and Kansas City (Missouri and Kansas), which allows for delivery drivers to access the customers’ homes or garages and deposit groceries directly into refrigerators. Walmart then temporarily suspended the service into kitchens in 2020 in light of the pandemic, keeping the garage option afloat. Walmart has recently expanded the full service to Northwest Arkansas, and, according to Bloomberg, also expanded in Southeast Florida and will add Atlanta in July. 

Grocery delivery has become more commonplace as shoppers turned to online grocery delivery and pickup services as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Sales from grocery delivery and pickup in the U.S. have surged from $1.2 billion in August 2019, to reach $6.1 billion as of February 2021, according to statista.

While shoppers may have tried online grocery shopping due to safety concerns, they appear to be swayed by the convenience factor.

Nearly 70% of Americans report that grocery delivery is beneficial when they don’t have time for a trip to the grocery store, according to a recent survey by Morning Consult commissioned by Amazon. Of the 54% of Americans who highlighted convenience as the most important benefit of grocery delivery, 77% reported saving time as a beneficial advantage.

“Customers who tried Key In-Garage Grocery Delivery have loved the service, which is why we’re expanding it to everywhere Amazon offers grocery delivery,” said Pete Gerstberger, head of Key by Amazon. “As customers look for more convenience in their daily lives, we’re excited to deliver another service that not only helps them save time, but provides peace of mind knowing that tonight’s dinner is safe in their garage and out of the weather.”

“Grocery delivery was niche, and now it’s very mainstream,” Whitney Pegden, a Walmart vice president and the general manager for InHome, told Bloomberg. “Now we have a large group of consumers used to it, and they’re starting to return to normal life and running into the issue of having to be home during deliveries. So the timing is really ripe for our service.”

a person standing in front of a refrigerator
Walmart offers one service for delivery into both homes and garages.

Pricing and Customer Experience

With the expansion, Key In-Garage Grocery Delivery is available everywhere Amazon offers grocery delivery, at no additional cost to eligible Prime members. Amazon is also offering a $20 Amazon credit after the first in-garage grocery order. Walmart charges $19.95 a month for the service with a 30-day free trial, but no additional membership is required.

Amazon’s service requires a myQ connected smart garage door opener to enable garage access for secure delivery. To view videos of their delivery, customers can use a compatible Ring smart home camera with their Ring Protect Plan, or LiftMaster Smart Garage Camera powered by myQ with a myQ Video Storage Subscription.

Eligible Prime members can shop online at www.amazon.com/fresh or www.amazon.com/wholefoods and build a cart just like they would for any grocery delivery order. Customers with a compatible garage door opener or myQ Smart Garage Hub can connect the myQ app with Key, then simply select “Key Delivery” at checkout for no additional cost. Once the order is placed, a trained shopper will fill the order. Grocery orders are securely delivered by a delivery service professional, and customers can easily use the Key by Amazon app or the Amazon mobile shopping app to be notified when their groceries arrive.

“We’ve worked hard to bring the convenience of grocery delivery from Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market to even more Prime members, now reaching customers in more than 5,000 cities and towns,” said Stephenie Landry, Vice President of Grocery at Amazon. “I’m thrilled to offer customers Key In-Garage Grocery Delivery, and believe this expansion illustrates our commitment to continually innovate to make the experience of ordering groceries online even better for customers.”

Walmart’s InHome garage delivery service can be utilized by shoppers through their own entry keypads they already have or they can purchase a GoControl Smart Garage Door Controller for $49.95, plus free professional installation. Walmart’s mobile app notifies customers when a delivery person is at the home & ready to get started and every visit is livestreamed & recorded— shoppers can watch up to seven days after. After delivering directly into garage refrigerators, they “sanitize, lock up, & leave.”