As coupons evolve with mobile, they can still infer a deal, even if not a discount.
Like most of all else ported to a new medium, paper-based coupons moved to the net and then to mobile in traditional ways, allowing them to be digitally ‘clipped,’ printed, stored and shown at stores.
That type of coupon generally provides the consumer with a discount. Some of these come via text message, such as the routine offers from Target, including checkout barcodes and directions for cashiers to execute them.
There also are reminder coupons. No recent rentals from your Redbox app? They send an occasional free-rental deal, for that day only.
All of those types of coupons get a product to a consumer for less cost to them.
Perhaps the next generation of deals can come from post-couponing. These provide value to the consumer after the purchase in the form of rewards.
Multiple apps, such as Shopkick, WeReward and CheckPoints do this to varying degrees.
A post-couponing company named Plink, a newcomer to mobile, may have figured an easier way to offer the rewards hassle free while driving incremental revenue to businesses.
Started a year and a half ago by CEO Peter Vogel, Plink automatically credits its 400,000 members every time they use their credit card at partner locations, which include Dunkin’ Donuts, Arby’s, Gap, Taco Bell, Burger King and 7-Eleven.
Points accumulated can be converted to gift cards at a number of locations.
While the credit-card reward concept is not new, the mobile app launching in two weeks will add push capabilities, the ability for location-based check-ins and a device for updates.
“It’s a passive loyalty program, so you don’t have to check in,” says Vogel. Shoppers get bonus point for checking in after they make a purchase at the location.
The deal is not about going to a location only to get something cheaper nor is it associated with a specific product.
With post-couponing, the product is not discounted and the customer receives additional value after the purchase.