Did you know the very first coupon came out in the 1887? In the ever-evolving landscape, coupons today are digital via apps, texts and online sources giving consumers a reason to choose your brand over another.
When I’m shopping, I not only wear my “CEO of the household” hat but I also put on my “Marketing/PR professional” hat. I’m always observing how other brands drive product awareness. So, I decided to put some of the most popular money-saving apps to the test – not only for my own personal use but also to see which ones I would recommend to my clients.
From one cheap marketing chick to the next, here are my Three Favorite Money-Saving Apps.
- Ibotta – by far the most robust and easiest to use traditional coupon app I’ve tried. Since I’ve started using it, I’ve saved more than $230 in one year! Each week, before my big grocery shopping trip, I peruse the available rebates and activate the ones I want to use. Ibotta has the most rebates available and the widest variety of brands and products from grocery to baby to home and beyond. I almost always will choose a brand that has an Ibotta rebate versus others. If you shop at Walmart, the redeeming part is a snap. Simply scan the receipt QR code and the app automatically pulls the rebates you are eligible for and deposits the money into your account within minutes. Through Ibotta, you also receive bonuses and referral earnings. For redemption, you can opt for PayPal or Venmo deposits or gift cards. Ibotta gives brands a unique opportunity to showcase their product to create more awareness with consumers. Sign up for Ibotta here.
- Ebates – the ONLY way to shop online. The first time I heard about Ebates, I just knew there had to be a catch or that it was a scam. But I tried it and was amazed! You literally make money by shopping online. To use it, visit Ebates BEFORE you shop then search for the retailer you plan to buy from. Simply click the link on the Ebates site. You’ll be directed back to the retailer’s site and activated for a percent cashback off your total purchase. Cashback ranges from 1 percent to as much as 25 percent. You’ll receive a check quarterly. For example, if I make a purchase from SamsClub.com for $100 and the cashback for Sam’s Club is 5 percent $5 is credited to my account. You can use Ebates for any retailer they support. As a consumer, I will always choose a retailer with a higher cashback. This is a great tactic for any brand to add to their marketing mix. A $5 trip here, a $2 trip there really adds up to a nice quarterly check and builds brand affinity in the process. Consumers like knowing you are helping them save money with an extra step. Sign up for Ebates here.
- Sift – just as its name suggests, it sifts through online purchases to catch price reductions, alert of warranty expirations and monitor returns. If you make a purchase on a supported credit card, it will credit your account when the item goes on sale. The app will alert you when it finds a lowered price and ask you to verify the credit card so the card can be credited. You save money by not doing a thing! Sign up for Sift here.
Today marketers can leverage the money-saving desire of consumers and the growth of digital couponing, rebates and price matching to drive sales for their brands. Savings-conscious consumers are embracing these tactics and therefore, so should all brands.