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Checkout 51 quickly gains two million users interested in CPG coupons

September 8, 2014

checkoutConsumer-packaged goods companies Unilever, Kellogg’s, Johnson & Johnson, Mondelez, SC Johnson, General Mills and Heinz are some that have aided couponing mobile application Checkout 51 in its milestone of obtaining two million users. 

Given the app’s personalization capabilities, Checkout 51 allows its partners to send targeted offers and messages to consumers based on prior purchases. Through receipt data that consumers upload to the app, the combined efforts of the platform and CPG companies can offer relative savings on the products that customers are purchasing most often.

“The company established itself as Canada’s top grocery savings app in 2013 and then launched in the U.S. in 2014,” said Noah Godfrey, founder of Checkout 51, Toronto. “Between the two countries, Checkout 51 has three million members who have saved over $8 million, and it’s working with almost every major CPG.

“In the U.S. alone, Checkout 51 has more than two million members who have saved almost $5 million.”

Buying for cheap
Checkout 51 is a free app that has aspired to reinvent coupons, giving shoppers cash back for taking photos of their grocery receipts, and allowing CPGs to target offers to shoppers based on their ongoing purchase data. Checkout 51’s participating CPGs

Every Thursday, Checkout 51 sends its members a new list of 20-40 offers on a range of food, personal care and home cleaning products to help members save throughout the entire grocery store.

Checkout 51 members can buy these products from any store, such as Kroger, Costco, Target, CVS, Publix and more, and then simply upload a photo of their receipt through the app or Web site. The Checkout 51 processing system verifies the purchase and credits the member’s account with cash back.

When members’ accounts reach $20, they can redeem their credit and will receive a check in the mail.

“We get a lot of members joining because of word of mouth,” Mr. Godfrey said. “As mentioned, Americans have already saved almost $5 million, so they clearly love the value they’re getting and they tend to tell their friends.

Checkout 51 also markets itself through a combination of mobile advertising, public relations, such as mentions in places such as ABC News, the Steve Harvey Show, All You and Every Day with Rachael Ray magazines, and through a network of various bloggers, Mr. Godfrey said.

Targeted offers
A recent study shows that mobile shoppers are increasingly receptive to relevant ads.

While more consumers than ever find mobile ads helpful, with relevancy a key factor in driving engagement, the xAd/Telmetrics 2014 Mobile Path-to-Purchase study shows that nearly 50 percent saying mobile ads are informative and helpful, up 113 percent from 22 percent last year.

Additionally, 40 percent reported clicking on ads, with nearly half of these taking secondary actions such as viewing a referring Web site and searching for additional product information (see story).

Furthermore, the number of ecoupons redeemed by consumers is expected to double over the next three years, driven in large part by mobile, which is impacting how consumers search for, store and redeem offers, according to research from Juniper Research.

Consumer behavior is evolving to incorporate online or mobile coupon search, resulting in a sharp rise in traffic to coupon sites and an increase in coupons being stored on mobile devices, per the report. However, food brands have, for the most part, failed to capitalize on the opportunity in digital coupons, according to separate research from L2 (see story).

Checkout 51 still refuses to be complacent despite its growing success, as it claims to be preparing for upcoming updates.

“We’ve got an exciting app update coming soon, which includes some great new features that will continue to make the grocery shopping experience better for our members,” Mr. Godfrey said. “Stay tuned.”

Final Take
Caitlyn Bohannon is an editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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