If you want to save money when shopping, coupon apps are a great way to efficiently and effectively save money on a wide range of purchases. It doesn’t matter if you are looking to save on groceries, clothes, experiences or restaurants, there is likely a coupon of some sort available that can help you keep your hard-earned dollars in your wallet.
Remember when couponing that you shouldn’t let coupons determine where and how much you spend. Instead, put coupons into your regular budgeting process to save on purchases you would make anyway. If you would not make a purchase and do so because of a coupon, you are not saving money, you are just spending less. Don’t just spend less, use these coupon apps to help you save where you already spend on a regular basis.
Best for Groceries : Ibotta
When you walk into the grocery store, you should never buy anything that wasn’t already on your list. So before you leave home, open up the Ibotta app to look out for any coupons that fit your needs and represent products you would likely buy anyway. Mark them in the Ibotta app, and go buy them just like you would without a coupon. Make sure to keep your receipt handy when you leave the store, you’ll need it again later.
After you get home, open up Ibotta again and choose the option to redeem those coupons. You will have to scan the barcode on the item and your receipt, and you should get credit for the purchase within a day, though it may be as fast as a few minutes. Once you reach $20, you can cash out with PayPal or Venmo and get real money back.
Best for Dining and Experiences : Groupon
The original daily deal app, Groupon isn’t grabbing headlines like it once did but is still a major player in the coupon space. Most Groupon coupons come in the form of a deal where you pay a discounted rate for a specific service or value. For example, a current deal allows you to pay $10 for $20 at a local restaurant. One big thing to be aware of, however, is that Groupon promotional values expire if you don’t use them in the allotted time frame. Once they expire, you can still redeem for the cash value you paid.
These can be big money savers at places you already go and help you find new places at a lower cost. Groupons go far beyond food to include activities such as go-karting, skydiving, wine tasting, zoo and theme park admissions and home services.
Best for Printable Coupons : Coupon Sherpa
Coupon Sherpa is one of the older couponing apps and has a great section filled with printable coupons you can use at a variety of stores. A quick glance gives you options for restaurants, regional department stores, mall retailers, big box stores and specialty retailers.
Coupon Sherpa is more than just printable coupons, however. It also offers coupon codes and a range of deals through the mobile apps. Pre-plan with printed coupons or figure out your savings on the go with the app. Either way, you’re covered.
Best for Online Promo Codes : RetailMeNot
If you ever see a box for a promo code or coupon code when checking out online, do not click the checkout button before visiting RetailMeNot. Your efforts might not turn up anything useful, but you may just find yourself saving quite a bit on each purchase. Even a few dollars here and there adds up over time.
The mobile app helps with savings at a range of major retail stores and chains in addition to the coupon codes you’ll find on the website. The big downside of RetailMeNot, however, is that when you click to reveal a coupon code on the website, it opens up the website again in a new tab, and you’ll have to go back to the website to copy the coupon code. But that little inconvenience isn’t enough to deter from big savings.
Best Aggregator by City : YipIt
Groupon isn’t the only daily deals app out there. It has many clones and competitors, and many of them offer great coupons and deals. But with many coupon apps to check daily, it is easy to miss out on the best deals. YipIt aims to solve that problem by scouring the Web for the best coupons in a big list of cities on your behalf.
Now you can just log in to one app to see a wide range of coupons from other apps. That is a big coupon time saver and helps you further zero in on the best options for your local area. It doesn’t work in small cities or towns, but if you live in a big city it is a great coupon app.
Best for Rewards : Shopkick
Shopkick isn’t a traditional coupon app, per say, but it does save you money at the stores where you shop the most. And, as with couponing, a little bit of strategizing can go a long way towards maximizing your returns. Shopkick allows you to earn rewards points, called “kicks,” as you do your everyday shopping both in-store and online. Once you earn enough kicks, you can redeem them for a gift card of your choice to stores like Target, Walmart, and Amazon, effectively saving you money on orders at the places you already shop.
So how does it work? Shopbot has partnered with some of the most popular chain stores that facilitate these rewards. You can earn kicks by just walking into these stores and make even more by scanning the barcodes of specific products while you’re there (something you can do on your regular weekly shopping trip). If you aren’t planning to go to the store, you can also get points by visiting online stores, watching videos, and viewing products on-site. None of these methods require that you purchase anything.
And if you do regularly shop at Shopbot’s partner stores (which is likely), you can earn kicks when you buy things with a linked credit card, order specific items online, or submit a receipt for an in-person purchase. Browse Shopbot to see which of your regular purchases can qualify for kicks, and you can passively earn points as you do your everyday shopping.
How Does a Coupon App Work?
A coupon app makes it easy to find discounts on a variety of purchases. It can help you find coupons, save them, and use them on everything from groceries to clothes to excursions. The coupon app scours the web for deals and passes them onto users in the form of cash back, digital coupons, promo codes, or paper coupons.
Each coupon app is a little bit different. Some want you to save and scan your receipt, others transform paper coupons into digital ones, and others give you a discount when you prepay for something you were already going to buy. Once you know what you want to purchase, you can find a coupon app to help you save money.
How Much Does a Coupon App Cost?
Coupon apps are typically free. You can find them online or in your phone’s App/Play Store. Although the app may be free, don’t let the coupon “convince” you to buy things you weren’t already planning on purchasing. It’s best to first make a grocery list, for example, and then see which coupon apps are applicable to the items you were already planning on purchasing.
How We Chose the Best Coupon Apps
After researching and reviewing the most popular coupon apps, we decided on the top 8 to suggest to our readers. We chose these 8 best coupon apps based on what type of discounts they offered, what they are known for, how they work, and how easy it is to redeem or use the discounts offered.