Bryan Leach, CEO and founder of the cash back rebate app, Ibotta, has this insight into how to best use mobile apps when shopping for gifts this holiday season.
Download shopping apps: Camping out in front of Target for 2015’s Tickle Me Elmo? Finally buying that big screen you’ve wanted from Best Buy? Popular retailers usually have exclusive deals for those who have downloaded their apps, so be sure to prep ahead of time. It’s worth scoping inventory before you head to the stores. Check out Ibotta for more than just Grocery rebates, but cash back on Apparel, Electronics, Sports & Fitness, and more.
Plan ahead: Don’t wait until December to begin buying all your gifts. Start scanning sales on apps and stocking up now, since stores typically clear inventory from the previous season and year to fill their shelves with brand new products. Target’s Cartwheel app is great at personalizing and tailoring deals for customers, so be sure to note what you’ve got your eye on now - it could be on sale next week, then a wrapped gift come December.
Don’t forget Cyber Monday and post holiday deals: While making your holiday shopping game plan, think early and don’t forget to compare in-store deals with the online sales that typically go live the weekend after Thanksgiving in honor of Cyber Monday. A majority of retailers will set discounts live on the web and via apps leading up to Black Friday, so begin scoping mid November and avoid the hustle and bustle of Black Friday and early December shopping live and in-person. Or, if you’re able to, hold out until the holidays have passed and score solid deals post for upcoming birthdays, or even the following year.
Get money back on the things you buy: The cost can be anywhere from a few percent off, to free, if you can find the right deal. Also, while the deals may not be tremendous for any single trip, 5 or 10% back on everything you buy just for using a mobile coupon could add up to hundreds or thousands of dollars per year. Plus, getting $10 on your $50 purchase means that not only are you saving 20%, but you'll walk out of the store feeling like a smarter shopper, and that might feel better than the lower price that you paid.
Multiple retailers now have free mobile apps that makes it easy for consumers to view offers before they go to the store, which allows them to plan their shopping trips accordingly, see where they can get the best deals, and get great deals on whatever they purchase. Target's Cartwheel is great at allowing shoppers to navigate prices and products easily and efficiently, while also providing Target-exclusive discounts. If you couple store apps with other cash back apps, like Ibotta, you'll make sure you're using mobile to both find the best deal and get cash back on top of it.