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July 2, 2010 has surpassed 1 million downloads for its iPhone and Android applications, proving that mobile coupon usage is on the rise.

The company has seen an increase in downloads for the Grocery iQ and applications with 300,000 downloads in the last 45 days. In addition, the applications provide a growing opportunity for marketers to engage with on-the-go consumers.

“It shows that consumers are actively engaging with the applications to shop better and save more,” said Steve Horowitz, chief technology officer of, Mountain View, CA. “If you think about the purchase process, many times it begins with adding an item to a list or browsing coupon offers that trigger a purchase decision.

“Because the apps are mobile, they are available in the store as consumers browse, compare and finally make their brand decision,” he said. “For brand marketers, it means they have the opportunity to engage with consumers throughout the entire path to purchase – from need identification to brand section in the store.

“It’s a great opportunity for marketers.”

Mobile coupons
The Grocery iQ application, which was introduced in 2008, lets users create and manage grocery lists.

The application includes voice recognition and bar code scanning and lets users print the coupons for redemption or use the Save to Card feature that loads the coupons to a user’s store loyalty card.

The application was introduced in 2009 and is a dedicated couponing application.

“There was some mobile advertising early on with Grocery iQ but the primary marketing vehicles have been PR and cross-marketing to users,” Mr. Horowitz said. “Cross-marketing to the 16 million unique monthly users of has been done via banners on and notices on our email newsletter that goes to millions of shoppers every week.

“Coupon use rose in 2009 for the first time in almost 20 years,” he said. “Part of this growth was driven by the increased adoption of digital coupons, by both consumers and brand marketers.

“In fact digital coupons represented the fastest growing category of coupons, growing 10 to 1 over their printed cousins that are distributed in the newspaper – we also attribute growth to an eye to the entire mobile coupon ecosystem—from the user and with obvious benefits to retailers who need to ensure a quick pace at POS.”

Rise of coupons
According to Mr. Horowitz, consumers are clamoring for coupons and mobile access makes them more convenient in some cases.

As digital coupons continue to grow in popularity and smartphones become more pervasive, the company expects mobile coupons to continue to grow on an even bigger trajectory. is currently working on expanding the supported mobile operating systems and has a version of Grocery iQ for the iPad in review at the Apple Store right now. 

“While we don’t anticipate a lot of consumers to carry an iPad into their grocery store, with Grocery iQ’s list synchronization capability, an item can be added a list on the iPad and it automatically shows up on the more mobile iPhone or Android phone,” Mr. Horowitz said. 

“We’ll also announce new syndication partners with location-based apps,” he said. “For example, currently we syndicate mobile coupons to Aloqa, so their users can benefit from savings from nearby businesses.

“Looking further down the road, we’re working on the next-generation of paperless coupons for redemption in high-volume transaction scenarios.”

Final take
Rimma Kats, editorial assistant of Mobile Commerce Daily, New York:

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Rimma Kats is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach her at

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