By Michael Patrick McSweeney (@mpmcsweeney)
Smartphone apps are must-have necessities for mobile shoppers this holiday season, but which apps are best positioned to gain traction with shoppers?
A recent Business Insider report broke down some of the hottest mobile shopping apps of the season, all of which take a unique approach to incentivizing shoppers to spend and save. From QR code scanners to coupon compilers, the apps on Business Insider’s list present a wide range of functionalities and features.
Which one is the most useful? At the end of the day, it’s up to the consumer to decide for them. However, you can rely on our breakdown of these popular apps by functionality.
The Strategic Black Friday
The following apps are Black Friday-only, but while you may write off these apps for their timely titles, Apple’s App Store ratings show they deliver.
BFAds – As the BF in its name implies, this app was created specifically to play a key role in any consumer’s Black Friday planning. BFAds lets users create strategic outlines by organizing their shopping lists by category or store. The app also serves as a communication for retailers, delivering push notifications to consumers whenever a new relevant deal is released.
Black Friday by FatWallet – Created by coupons and deals specialist FatWallet.com, FatWallet’s app lets consumers compare Black Friday prices and deals available at more than 100 participating retailers, such as major players likeJCPenney, Kmart and Kohl’s. You can also use FatWallet’s appe to make purchases, catalog deals for later use or send messages containing product or discount information.
More Than Just A QR Code Reader
The next two apps on our list are QR code readers that have been been turbo-charged for digital deals, as well as those that might require a scan to reveal in store.
RedLaser – One of several barcode scanning apps available, RedLaser offers a diverse selection of additional features that earned it 4.5 stars on the Apple App Store and positive reviews from The New York Times. Users can activate RedLaser when they enter a store, and the app will deliver coupons, maps, weekly circulars and other information key to succeeding on Black Friday.
ShopSavvy – This app sports similar functionalities as RedLaser. Users can access a range of product information, including price alerts as they develop during the shopping season. The app can also be used to send price and item data to friends and family.
Countless Coupons In Your Pocket
Coupon apps may have the biggest benefits at the point of sale, allowing for easy redemption, but both of these apps have impressive deal sorting capabilities that make them worth a look.
Coupon Sherpa – Coupon Sherpa lets you search for in-store coupons from a variety of retailers, providing you with detailed information about eligibility and duration. It also serves as platform for actually using the coupons at the register, and is integrated with social media, enabling users to send and receive additional coupons.
RetailMeNot Coupons – An app offered by online coupon information site RetailMeNot, RetailMeNot Coupons lets you load deals into your smartphone to be presented later at checkout. Additionally, the app provides a way to receive push notifications when you are in a location that is offering deals or special offers. Users that can’t fight the urge to save every coupon they find will also be alerted when one of their codes is about to expire.