retail shopping apps for iPhone

Retail shopping apps for iPhone and Android to kick off your savings

I’m a huge fan of playing fantasy football on my iPhone. I’m in a league with my old college buddies and we offer our yearly champion a little reward: we all pitch in to buy the winner a gift card to his or her favorite store. It’s a nice little incentive, but let me tell you, if you break it down by the many, many, many hours you have to spend making roster moves and setting your lineup, the reward is relatively small compared to the time investment.

iPhone retail apps save money shoppingHey, that’s okay! Win or lose, fantasy football is just plain fun. Plus, these days I’ve discovered other apps for my phone that can help me earn bigger and better rewards with much less time and energy (not to mention nail-biting anxiety) than it takes to capture first place in my super competitive fantasy football league. I’m talking about an awesome concept we can all root for: retail shopping apps for iPhone and Android that help you get paid to shop.

Now I’m hauling in rewards for all kinds of stuff I’ve been doing forever, like buying all the latest electronics, getting new clothes, and even shopping for paper towels. These retail shopping apps for my iPhone even pay me for buying groceries. Crazy. Crazy but true. And now I want to share my favorite shopping rewards apps with you, because, unlike a super competitive fantasy football league, we’re all on the same team here!

How Retail Shopping Apps for iPhone and Android Work

I think the biggest learning curve when it comes to fantasy football is how the apps work. I mean, I already knew a ton about football and which players are the best, but learning the ins and outs of how the fantasy football app itself worked took some time. The first season I played, I was shocked when my lineup locked at game time and I couldn’t acquire any new players until the following Wednesday.

So, let’s start by going over how retail shopping apps work. A lot of stores have branded apps as well, but we’re going to focus today on shopping rewards apps you can use at lots of different stores because those are the ones I use the most—and the good news is that they’re all incredibly easy to use!

The exact mechanics of how they work can sometimes vary depending on which one you decide to use, but all my favorites basically function like this: you get points for the shopping that you already do and then you trade those points in for rewards, usually in the form of gift cards. The app I use gives me points for buying featured products and taking a picture of my receipt, for scanning barcodes, and even for just walking into some of my favorite stores. It’s even more awesome than my Seahawks winning the Superbowl a few years ago (maybe).

The Top Benefits of Retail Shopping Apps for iPhones and Androids

I still remember the day when my buddy in college recruited me into his fantasy football league. I was skeptical—super skeptical. It just seemed like it would be a lot of hassle and take up way too much of my time. I was there to meet people and study, after all (mostly study, I swear!). My buddy laid it on pretty thick, though, by emphasizing how much fun it would make watching football every week, something I knew I was going to do either way. That was a really convincing argument. I mean, how can you say no to something that improves and enhances something you’re already doing?

Well, that all pretty much sums up my case for why you should embrace using retail shopping apps for your iPhone or Android: it enhances something you know you’re going to be doing already. I’m talking about shopping. You can’t avoid it, so you might as well get rewarded for doing it.

I touched on some of my favorite benefits of using a shopping rewards app above, but like the details of any epic fantasy football win, I don’t mind talking about them again:

  • #1: You’ll get paid to shop. Using a shopping rewards app scores me points for my budget while I’m at Target, Best Buy, or the grocery store—even online. It’s as simple as this: I have to shop for essentials (and tech accessories, of course) anyway, so why not haul in some big rewards for doing it?
  • #2: You’ll earn gift cards to your favorite stores: I love having gift cards to my favorite stores because, believe it or not, I actually keep a pretty careful budget. Having a gift card feels like I’m getting things for free. That’s why my second favorite benefit for retail shopping apps is that all the best ones let you trade your points in for free gift cards to stores like Amazon, Starbucks, and Walmart.
  • #3: You’ll feel like shopping is a game: I don’t mind shopping, but I also don’t love it—not until recently, at least. Now that I use retail shopping apps, there’s a challenge involved, though: how many points can I accumulate in one trip? It turns everyday shopping trips into a scavenger hunt. I’m a fan.

The Best Retail Shopping Apps for iPhone and Android

I think my long-time fantasy football league has now used three different platforms over the years to keep track of our rosters: Yahoo, ESPN, and CBS Sports. They all have different features, so it was kind of confusing each time we switched; in retrospect, I kind of wish we’d just picked one and stuck with it. That’s actually what my advice is to you with retail shopping apps: find one you love and stick with it (although you can also use multiple rewards apps to maximize your rewards, but that’s a different ballgame).

My personal favorite is an app called Shopkick. I’ve tried a few others, but I love this one because it’s super simple, it pays out in gift cards to all my favorite stores, and it gives me chances to score points, called kicks, at almost every turn, starting when I walk into the store. Shopkick has really maximized my shopping game with a single mobile app, kind of like how the Patriots would be nothing without a certain QB. One major difference between Shopkick and fantasy football, though, is that there are rarely heartbreaking defeats or subsequent trash talk.

Shopkick is super simple, pays out in gift cards to all my favorite stores, and gives me chances to score points

So yeah, I highly recommend taking out your iPhone or Android and downloading Shopkick. And fantasy football season is the perfect time to do it. There have been a ton of weekends when I’ve scored serious shopping points by stocking up on snacks before having my old buddies over to watch a game. Shopkick will definitely help you kick off your next shopping trip—and that’s no fantasy.

Ready to put down the fantasy football and pickup retail shopping apps for iPhone and Android? Download Shopkick for free and join a community of loyal Shopkickers who’ve already discovered the rewards of shopping with us!

And, if you love using your smartphone to stay up on social media, join us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for daily shopping inspiration.

Image courtesy Rido81



Shopkick is the fun and easy way to earn free gift cards for the shopping you already do. Download the app now!


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Dima Volovik

EVP of Product and Engineering

Dima Volovik is the EVP of Product and Engineering at Trax Retail — Shopkick.

Dima Volovik is the accomplished product and engineering leader who led teams to deliver innovative and commercially successful e-commerce products, marketplaces, and enterprise solutions for Amazon, Comcast, Fandango, and Universal Music. Before joining Trax, Dima was the Director at Amazon, where he led product development and Engineering for Amazon Appstore and Amazon Prime Video, CTO at Fandango, and Paciolan, head of technology at Golf Channel/Golf Now, and Global VP of Direct to Consumer Technology at Universal Music Group. Dima’s expertise includes developing consumer products, marketplaces, and enterprise solutions.

Dima grew up in Baku, Azerbaijan, where he received his MS in Electrical Engineering from Azerbaijan Oil Academy, and he currently resides in Los Angeles, California, with his family.