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How to Avoid Package Theft at Your Front Door

By Dennis Peng|Thursday December 6, 2018

You’ve seen it on the news; you’ve seen it on social media; and you’ve heard about it from your neighbors. Package theft is a serious problem!

About 26 million Americans have had a package stolen from their front door during the holidays. That’s about 21 percent of all households in the United States.

During the holiday season, about $108.2 billion is expected to be spent on online purchases. Unfortunately, this presents a ripe opportunity for thieves to cash in. Are you ready to face a game of chance to see if you’ll receive the item you purchased online?

avoiding package theft Ooma Butterfleye

The Problem of Package Theft

Burgeoning analysis of package theft shows this type of crime is more common in tech hubs and wealthy cities. In other words, thieves are seeking out high-value targets. Sometimes, thieves will even follow delivery trucks on their route so they can easily identify the deliveries where the recipient wasn’t home.

To counter the threat of package thieves, some local police stations have started leaving bait packages that are rigged with a GPS tracker. Delivery drivers have also gotten creative with where they leave packages, hiding them in bushes, in porch eaves, and in other unlikely locations.

Shoppers have also started to get creative by having deliveries sent to their workplace. One online shopper in Chicago noted that this tactic can make for a strange commute. She said, “Sometimes, I’m just sitting on the Red Line with a wig in my hand, or potting soil in my backpack, thinking, this is so weird. I thought Amazon was supposed to make my life easier?” she said.

Despite the attempts to curb package thieves, one easy to implement solution can have the best results for protecting delivered packages: video security.

How Video Security Protects You Against Package Thieves

Without video security, you could be left with a mysterious gap between receiving the email that your package was delivered and arriving home to find no package at your front door. The void between those two events could lead to lengthy calls with customer service or insurance claims for lost items of high value. At minimum, you face delays, and you could be left without a gift during your holiday exchange. (So much for two-day shipping!)

On the other hand, adding video security to your front door can remove the mystery of what happened to your package. Not only would you see your item being stolen, but you may also get an image of the thief’s face or of his or her license plate.

With the footage from your security camera, you’d have evidence to provide to the police, a video clip to share on social media, and screenshots to pass out to your neighbors. Not only can this documentation be valuable when trying to catch the thief, but it can also help your neighbors be on the lookout if the “porch pirate” returns.

Better Protection with Internet-enabled Smart Security Cameras

Legacy video security systems provide you with critical visual documentation. However, they fail to provide the speed that can be crucial in protecting your home, your belongings, and your deliveries.

Smart security cameras, such as the Ooma home security camera, provide users with instant access to activity alerts. After receiving an alert on your mobile device, you can click through to the Ooma Butterfleye app for immediate access to the footage of the detected activity. Additionally, the Ooma Butterfleye provides an instant video capture feature that starts the clip five seconds before the event, so you’ll catch as much action as possible when identifying the thief.

With seven days of free video storage in the cloud, your Ooma Butterfleye smart security camera provides you with tools to view a package thief immediately, and then download or share the clip. Being able to take appropriate measures quickly can increase your chances of recovering your stolen items. In addition, the Ooma Butterfleye has backup systems to keep you covered during both internet and power outages.

Ooma Home with Butterfleye security

The Ooma Butterfleye is available as a part of the Ooma wireless home security system which provides multi-point home protection including an Ooma Telo, two door/window sensors, one motion sensor, one Ooma Butterfleye camera, and the ability to add unlimited additional security sensors including water sensors, a garage door sensor, or siren.

Advanced Security from Ooma Butterfleye

The Ooma Home security system with the Ooma Butterfleye smart security camera go beyond instant alerts. It provides you with advanced technology so you can be on the cutting edge of home security.

Subscribers to the Ooma Butterfleye Home Secure plan unlock innovative facial recognition technology, which you can use to algorithmically reinforce your security. When using the AI-powered facial recognition security feature, the Ooma Butterfleye is able to recognize familiar faces and group activity based on facial profiles.

With facial recognition, your security notifications can improve from saying, “Activity was detected” to saying, “John was seen.” If it doesn’t recognize the person, Ooma Butterfleye will say “Unknown person was detected.” The longer you use the camera, the stronger the facial profiles will become.

Ooma video security facial recognition

There’s a two-fold benefit to this powerful technology.

First, you can customize your notifications to only be alerted to unknown faces. This can save you from unnecessary notifications about your friends, family, or neighbors. By focusing your notifications on unknown faces, you’ll avoid the notification fatigue that can happen from unnecessary false alarms.

Second, if you have your Ooma Butterfleye positioned to capture passers-by on the street or sidewalk, you could start to build a rich data set about what happens in front of your house. With the facial recognition technology, it’s possible that the Ooma Butterfleye could identify your package thief and associate the person with other instances where he or she passed next to your security camera. As authorities investigate, this could provide valuable intelligence on associating your stolen package with other nearby thefts on associated days.

Learn more about how the Ooma home security system and Ooma Butterfleye can provide you with multi-point home security.

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Loyal customers are critical to business success because they tend to be a source of repeat business. According to The Loyalty Report 2018, “Loyalty programs that establish positive emotional connections with Members see 27% more of their Membership increasing their spend with the Brand.” This research tells us that building customer loyalty can lead to more spending.

Loyalty programs vs. improving customer experience: Designing your approach

There are different approaches to building customer loyalty. Some companies use loyalty program cards, bonus offers and other incentives. You might offer access to special deals like CVS or take 5% off the purchase price like Target. You might even give some or part of your product away for free, like airlines that provide free flights through their loyalty programs. What if your small business isn’t interested or able to offer these kinds of loyalty programs?

There is another way to encourage loyal customers to keep giving you repeat business. Gather customer feedback through a phone survey and then use that data to improve the customer experience. When customers see that the business owner has acted on their feedback, they may feel inspired to return to that business. That means more revenue for the bottom line. You just need a fast and straightforward way to conduct a customer satisfaction survey. That’s where a focused business phone survey comes in.

Why increasing customer loyalty with a phone survey is a good choice.

Organizing a customer satisfaction survey by phone offers notable advantages compared to other methods. While a net promoter survey can give you interesting data, there is no conversational element involved. Further, using the net promoter survey approach effectively requires a certain degree of specialized training in the net promoter methodology.

You might also consider online customer surveys. Surveying your email list or website is worth attempting. Depending on the size of your email list or website traffic, you might be able to get a large number of survey responses. The challenge with online customer surveys is that you will have to spend a lot of time reviewing the data to find insights. There is no way to ask a customer to clarify their survey responses or provide an example.

Conducting a customer satisfaction survey by phone gives you the best of both worlds. You can ask questions and get survey responses. However, you also have the opportunity to provide the human touch. For instance, you may hear a customer complain about a lost or delayed order. When you hear about a problem during a phone survey, you can gather all the necessary details to make the situation right with the customer.

How to increase customer loyalty with a phone survey step by step.

The following steps give you a starting point to create a simple customer satisfaction survey. Over the course of a month, you could gather a significant amount of insights to improve your customer service by calling five to 10 customers per day.

  1. Define your customer satisfaction survey goals.

Before calling a single customer, reflect on your business goals. Are you seeking to improve your profit margins? In that case, you may want to focus your survey on the customers that spend the most on your business. Finding ways to make high-spending customers content may give you an excellent return. Alternatively, you may decide to focus your survey project on whether your local SEO has attracted customers. 

  1. Write your customer satisfaction survey questions.

Now that you have clarity on your goals, it is time to write your questions. According to Survey Monkey, a survey software company, it is best to focus your survey on closed-ended questions. An example of a closed-ended question would be: “How many times have you bought from our business in the past 12 months?” However, this kind of question may not give you the ideas you need to improve the customer experience.

At the end of the survey, consider asking one or two open-ended questions to understand better what your customers like. Encourage customers to think creatively with a question like this: “If you could change anything in our business, what would you improve?”

Tip: Reduce your need for note-taking by using call recording, but make sure that you ask for permission first.

  1. Test the survey with a small group of customers.

With your list of customer satisfaction questions, make a few test phone calls to customers. The purpose of the test is to discover if any of the questions are unclear. If you receive confusing answers, revise the question to make them clearer.

  1. Train employees on how to gather survey responses.

Consider running a few training phone calls for your employees. Ask them to call you or other employees in a role-playing scenario. Making a few practice calls will help your employees become more familiar with the questions. Besides, practice phone surveys will help employees learn how to record survey responses accurately. Once the training is complete, give your staff a list of customers to call and let them get started.

  1. Review the survey responses for insights and follow up with customers.

After all of the survey responses are in, schedule time to review the results. In particular, look for patterns in the results. If a large number of people gave low scores to your website, you may need to make improvements. Also, review the survey responses received in the open-ended questions. You might be pleasantly surprised at what customers tell you.

  1. Follow up with customers after the survey when needed.

A phone survey lets you gather rich insights because you can quickly ask follow-up questions. However, merely gathering survey responses may not impress your customers very much. Instead, offer to refer problems to the business owner for improvement or offer to enter the respondent in a drawing for a gift card. That is a much more compelling improvement! By addressing problems and issues when they arise, you stand a much better chance of winning additional loyal customers.