I’m willing to bet you have the Groupon app on your phone. It’s been downloaded over 80 million times, and 56% of Americans have smartphones. If you do the math, 80 million would be about 54% of the number of American smartphone users. You read this blog, so you like saving money. So I figure the chances are pretty good that you’ve used a Groupon before, bought in front of your PC or on your phone.
I have good news for you: that app just got better.
On June 11, Groupon rolled out their new “Freebies” feature for iOS. (You can also access it in front of a computer, Apple or not.) Freebies features on-line sales, promo codes, codes for free samples, and, my personal favorite, in-store coupons.
I get coupons in the mail from BabiesRUs and Toys R Us. I hardly ever end up using them, though. They either get lost or I’ll make an impromptu trip with my coupons sitting ready on the counter at home while I’m roaming the aisles.
But in-store coupons accessible on my phone? I could save trees AND stop cursing myself as I spend 15% more than I had to. It also allows for even smarter on-line vs. in-person shopping comparisons. Maybe Amazon has the product for 10% less, but with this in-store coupon I know I don’t have to order on-line and wait for it to ship; I can get it right here and now for cheaper at that 15% off rate.
Sears is a great place to peruse the baby section. They have a lot of cute stuff for surprisingly affordable prices, and I can use my Kmart ShopYourWay Rewards card there to rack up some points. But the only in-store coupons they ever send me are for photo portraits. So finding some in-store coupons on an app is such a major bonus as I can save even more money on things I was going to buy anyways.
I’ve looked into purchasing the many, many diapers we use at Diapers.com before. They sell economy-size boxes, but the price-per-unit just never worked out for me. It always ended up costing just a little bit more than what I’d spend in-store. But with a promo code I found via Groupon? It’s about 2 cents cheaper per diaper, which wouldn’t be such a big deal except that I can get them delivered to my door.
I still don’t completely understand the business model behind Build-A-Bear‘s website. To me, it seems like the whole point of buying one of their stuffed animals is to give the child the experience of making it themselves. BUT, if you’re in the store and your child is dressing the doll, you might be able to persuade them to hold off on the teddy-bear-sized accessories until you can order them online, because your Groupon app can now tell you when there’s a super on-line sale on those super small clothes.
From here on out, I’m checking Freebies before I check out every time. Wherever I shop. Because a lot of times, there are codes up there for free samples or items with a purchase. So if there’s something in my cart anyways, I might as well get a free bonus.
And if I see a commercial for something I may want to try? I can check Freebies first to see if the company has a campaign going on to get a free sample of the product before I buy. This happens a lot when the company is launching a new product.
As many of you know, I buy my apps via the Android market. And while I’m over-the-moon happy with my phone, service, and operating system, I am a little jealous that all you iPhone users tend to get apps first.
But I won’t have to wait long. Groupon will be adding the Freebies feature to the app on the Android market later this summer. Until then, I’ll just get my Freebies on my PC and glare at you iOS users in envy as you use the app while you’re shopping in the store.
*I have received compensation for this post from Groupon. Regardless, all opinions are my own.*