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ShopRite, Safeway, Kroger launch mobile coupons via Verizon

February 4, 2010

Verizon's Spend Smart service

Verizon's Spend Smart service

ShopRite, Safeway and Kroger along with other grocery chains are serving mobile coupons via Verizon Communications Inc.’s new free digital coupon service for its wireless and FiOS TV customers.

The Spend Smart coupons are powered by Cellfire in an effort to eliminate the hassle of clipping and collecting paper coupons. Consumers can access the coupons via their wireless devices, televisions and computers.

“Verizon is giving old-school coupons a new-age twist with access on all three screens,” said Deidre Mulcahy Hart, a spokeswoman at Verizon, Basking Ridge, NJ. “Whether you’re on your phone, PC or TV, coupon clipping just got easier.  

“Any electronic coupon-clipping action taken on one screen by a consumer is automatically synced via the service to all other screens,” she said. “Spend Smart coupons are all digital and therefore offer a greener solution to promotions that could help reduce the need to use paper for couponing.”

Verizon is a provider of broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to mass-market, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates a wireless network, serving more than 91 million customers nationwide.

Cellfire is a provider of electronic and mobile coupon services.

Tech-savvy savings
Current coupons for ShopRite including savings of 50 cents on Progresso soups, 55 cents on Multigrain Cheerios and 75 cents on Hamburger Helper.

Savings available to Kroger customers include 75 cents on Ban products, 50 cents on Chex Mix and $1 on Nature Valley Nut Clusters.

Consumers can save $1 on Jergens lotion, 50 cents on Yoplait cups and $1 on Bud Light Golden Wheat beer at Safeway.

The coupons will be redeemable at more than 4,000 locations of 20 grocery store chains.

Coupons, brands and products rotate every two weeks, with more than $25 in monthly grocery discounts available.

“Since grocery shopping is an essential activity for most American households, the program is intended to appeal to all who wish access to valuable and convenient discounts,” said Dan Kihanya, vice president of consumer marketing at Cellfire, San Jose, CA.

“Cellfire has traditionally seen highest appeal for discount services on the phone from consumers that are in the 25-to-49 age range,” he said. “Most consumers today already have a cell phone and Verizon offers many highly capable phone models that can take advantage of services like Spend Smart.”

Verizon Wireless customers can register and sign up for the coupons via the mobile Web on the shopping channel.

On FiOS Internet, consumers can register in the Entertainment and Apps channel and through FiOS TV’s Widget Bazaar Applications Marketplace.

Consumers can also access Spend Smart coupons at

There is no cost to register or use the service, but data or megabyte charges may apply when accessing the mobile Web.

When consumers sign up on one of these services, the information is automatically synced to the other two, allowing them to view and use coupons on each platform.

To register, consumers need to provide their shoppers or loyalty club numbers from participating grocery stores.

After registering, consumers will be able to view, save and use the coupons that are currently available for that retailer.

To redeem coupons, Spend Smart users present their loyalty cards at the register.

If the consumer has an item with an associated coupon in their cart, the discount is automatically applied to their bill.

Consumer choice
The company is marketing the availability of the service to its subscribers through mobile Web banner ads, application banner ads and house ads and placement at

“Verizon offers a wide variety of applications and services to all our customers,” Ms. Mulcahy Hart said. “We want to let them choose what makes sense for their lifestyles and needs.

“Programs like Spend Smart provide a great opportunity for our customers to use their phones, TVs and computers to save some money on something they do every week, and gives retailers and consumer packaged goods companies a great way to increase their distribution,” she said.

“It’s important our customers have many choices of what to do with their phones and other service relationships with Verizon, and digital coupons are a useful and exciting option.”

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Chirs Harnick is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach him at

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