How to Use Your Smartphone as a Shopping Tool

Posted on 05/11/2012

Next to your honest friend that tells you the truth about that pair of jeans you’re about to buy, your smartphone could be the best shopping tool you’ve got. According to comScore, more than half of American smartphone owners use their phone while shopping in stores. But with great benefits like these—it’s something every savvy smartphone owner should be doing.

Find Store Locations Quickly A 2012 study from Nielsen found that half of smartphone shoppers are already using a GPS or mapping app to find a retail location. If you’re not, consider this as a resource to get you where you need to go as quickly as possible. No need to waste gas driving around when your smartphone can get you there.

“Check In” for Discounts
Using apps like FourSquare isn’t just a way to tell the world where you are every second of the day. By checking in at certain stores you can unlock discounts that you may not be able to find otherwise. For example, check in at American Eagle, show your smartphone to the cashier and you’ll save 15% off your entire purchase.

Quickly Scan for Mobile Coupons
A recent Mobile Audience Insights Report from JiWire found that one in five consumers search for a coupon on their mobile device while they’re in a store which makes us wonder—why aren’t the other 80% of shoppers doing this? Download free apps like Coupon Sherpa, The Coupons App or GeoQpons.

Compare Prices
Coupons are one thing, but the price tag is another. Prices can vary significantly based on retailer which is why using your smartphone to comparison shop just makes sense. Apps like Amazon Price Checker, Google Shopper and RedLaser are all top-rated free barcode scanning apps.

Scan Reviews and Get Facts
A recent report from Leo J. Shapiro and Associates revealed that nearly three in four people who use their phones while shopping do so to look up a product’s facts and figures on the web. More than half check out reviews and other content discussing the product. Honest reviews from other shoppers like you can be a great way to determine if something is worth the money or not. And if you can do that before you head to the check-out you’ll save yourself from wasting your money.

By Alison Storm

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