I was a late-adopter of the smart phone, finally upgrading to an iPhone in 2013. Smart phones make many tasks easier – from posting on social media, to quickly checking email, to looking up the address or phone number of a business. One of the most pleasant experiences to come with my upgrade was learning that my smart phone could help me save money. The following are what I have found to be the best shopping apps.
It’s not always easy or convenient these days to get behind a desktop or laptop prior to making a purchase. I especially like how the best shopping apps help me save money on the go – when I’ve already left home and I’m at a store.
Best Shopping Apps
The following are apps that I currently use for shopping, or have used in the past. All are available by easy download through the App Store run by Apple. All you have to do is type in the name of any of these apps to download them. Please note: Many of these apps are versions of website that you can also use and access via a desktop or laptop web browser.
• Favado: When shopping for household items I always try to have a coupon in hand and shop a sale. There is Favado Mobile and Favado Desktop. Sometimes, however, I have a coupon but don’t know if the item is on sale. With Favado you simply type in the name of the item and the app will list what stores have the item on sale. There is also Favado desktop.
• Rakuten: I’ve been using Rakuten since 2010. When you shop online through Rakuten.com you receive cash back on your purchase in the form of a check. I’ve received more than $500 in cash back since joining!
• eBay: I often list items on eBay in the winter. It’s a great pastime when it’s too cold outside to enjoy outdoor activities. I can easily check my current auctions and see if I have any bids. If you wish to purchase an item, the app makes it as easy as only a few taps.
• The Amazon App: Are you an avid Amazon shopper? Have you ever been at a store and wondered if the item you were eyeballing was cheaper on Amazon? The Amazon App allows you to scan any item in a store and quickly check the price of the same item on Amazon.
• RetailMeNot: When I shop online I try to use discount and promo codes whenever available. These codes might save me $5 or $10 off an item, or alert me to a percentage-off sale. This app lets you search for and find codes to use before you buy an item.
• Key Ring: I often sign up for store discount cards to ensure I get the best price when I shop, however, these cards can quickly fill a wallet or keychain. The Key Ring app allows you to scan the barcodes on these cards and save them all in your phone. The next time you are shopping and asked to scan your card you can simply hold up your iPhone instead.
• Checkout 51: Some apps allow you to scan receipts and receive cash back on purchased items. The frustration I ran into with these apps was many offered low cash back incentives or only worked at certain stores. Checkout 51 is not store-specific, it’s item-specific. If you buy a gallon of milk you can receive cash back no matter where you purchased the milk.
What would you say are the best shopping apps?
*This post was originally published in 2014 and has been updated and republished for accuracy and comprehensiveness.