As smart phones become more common, companies are finding more ways for you to use them. The current rage for applications is for companies to not only advertise, but offer special deals to bring customers into the store. As the phone is a small computer, you know that it has limited memory and you need to be cautious before downloading just any old app. Even if it come recommended by a friend, always read the most recent reviews as sometimes update intended to fix a small issue or provide more service, end up causing major problem with the entire program.
My phone is an android but the app store has a lot of offerings for the iPhone as well.
Target has several options for your phone. You can select to receive daily deals, coupons and check the balance of your Red Card.
Safeway recently introduced an application that is receiving mixed reviews right now. While is has an overall high rating, the same complaint keeps appearing. I suggest keeping an eye on this app to see if the company continues to improve it.
The Coupons is an app that provides deals from a large variety of places. However, many are also available in their ads or if you sign up for their emails. I have yet to find a local deal for my small town, but can use many of the codes online.
Living Social has an app, but you can also request deals be emailed to you so you can access them via our phone without downloading the app. This is most beneficial if you live in a larger city.
If you use a lot of loyalty cards, this app is for you. Key Ring allows you to scan them into your phone so you can remove them from your key chain. The big issue is if your particular store has the ability to scan from your phone. I recommend keeping all the cards in a drawer till you know if they are accepted and in case you replace your phone, you still have access to them if needed.
If you have ever seen those funny boxes in ads or on store displays asking you to scan them, they are called QR Barcodes. Sometimes they have recipes or advice, and sometimes they are coupons.
You need to download an app that will allow the camera on the phone to scan it. Once you have scanned the code you will have access to the coupons it enables.
Warriors has one that gets mixed reviews. It seemed to me that most complaints were regarding the Galaxy and since that is what I have, I did not download it. All other phone users seemed to be quite happy with the app.
QR Droid has the best overall reviews at this time.
Starbucks has their own application that allows you to put in your card as well as track your stars. It also helps you to find a local store. The big plus is that your cards are already in the system if you use the online feature.
There is also My Coffee Card which has the added feature of a notepad. I like using this if I am taking orders, it allows me to keep it all in one place and for people I buy for frequently (who have complicated drinks) I saved the order. The FREE version only allows you to store a single card is the biggest drawback. To store more you must upgrade. Both apps help you find local stores.
If you know of some other great shopping apps for either the iPhone or Android, please share.