New apps can replace paper coupons

January 12, 2011 8:42:28 PM PST
It's a new year. And with this new year we've found some new apps that can help you save money. Turns out clipping coupons is so last year. So, drop those scissors, and grab your SmartPhone if you want to be on the cutting edge of saving.

If you have an iPhone, an Android or even a Blackberry you can use coupon apps instead of paper coupons -- and you won't have to worry about leaving them at home when you want them.

"These apps are usually free and you can download them right to your cell phone," explains Rowan University Adjunct Marketing Professor Jennifer Regina. "And it sets up coupons that are based with national retailers and also, using the GPS on your phone, will bring you local coupon deals."

Regina says both national retailers and local businesses are using apps like Coupon Sherpa for the iPhone and Geo-Qpons for Android to reach potential customers with great success.

"Traditional coupons had only about a 1% redemption rate and what they're finding with these online or mobile apps is that companies are finding between 10-20% redemption rates," she explains. Coupon Sherpa, for iPhone, allows you to search for coupons by store name or category... And using your phone's GPS, will even find stores closest to you.

The coupons appear on the screen, with a bar code that the cashier can scan. "A lot of people are worried that these restaurants or establishments won't accept the coupons on your cell but most generally, they do," Regina says.

"And I've even spoken to many services and they're saying if they cannot for some reason scan the coupon , they usually have a reserve paper print-out that they will honor."

Geo Qpons works much the same way and is available for iPhone, Android or Blackberry.

Also for Android, there's The Coupons App, which has an added function that finds the cheapest gas prices near your location and even give you directions to the service station.

"It allows consumers to overcome the stigma of carrying around loose coupons, worrying about it and there's a cool factor now, to show it on your mobile phone," Regina says.