Most tech savvy people these days are aware of applications like Foursquare.
Foursquare is a location based mobile app that lets the user check into a location. Business wise, Foursquare allows a business to offer deals or discounts to those checking in with the application. Users can also earn various badges by checking into various types of locations. For example, the Barista badge for checking into five different Starbucks.
Then we have Groupon. Groupon isn’t location based, or a mobile application. Rather, its a social based deal where a business offers a discounted price on say a gift certificate when a certain number of people sign up for the deal.
Group Tabs is a similar, recently launched platform that is somewhat location based and mobile. Unlike Groupon, nothing is purchased before hand. Instead a deal is posted online for a certain location at a certain time. People then proceed to sign up for it, log in their cell numbers and then visit the business. It’s only when enough people have shown up and have checked in through a web app on their phone, that each person is notified and the deal goes live.
The underdog of these is a mobile application called Shopkick. It is an app you download on your phone that allows the user to check in somewhere and get a deal. Instead of using geo-location tracking, it uses physical hardware in the store to check people in. There is a logical reason for this. A current fault with Foursquare is that you don’t physically have to be at a location to check in, you can simply search it, then check it, even if it says you’re five hundred meters away. Shopkick will be working with companies such as Macy’s, Best Buy, American Eagle and more as place opt to sign up. When people check in to a business, they then receive Kickbucks as well as local deals. Their website also states you can earn Kickbucks by scanning products in stores with your phone as well. The website and app will also offer various other special promotions in order to earn more Kickbucks. You can then use the bucks to redeem cool rewards like gift cards, iPads (I can’t imagine how many kickbucks you would need for that), music downloads, donations to causes and much more. I haven’t had a chance to try the application yet. I have downloaded the iPhone app and received a Level 1 Badge for Founder as being one of the first Shopkick members. Like other applications, the application offers badges ranked on various levels. How the application will do, only time will tell.