In and around mobile commerce, some things stay the same but things around those things tend to evolve and expand.
Three recent but totally unrelated mobile program modifications caught my eye over the last few days.
First, ShopSavvy, one of my favorite apps for in-store price checking since its launch several years ago, evolved its app to cater to shoppers. The app started aggregating all sales from more than 500,000 retailers and created more than 3,000 navigational product categories.
I now receive push notifications from ShopSavvy highlighting nearby sales. The app gives the option of not being notified, though not sure which mobile shoppers won’t want to be notified of nearby sales.
The app started as a price checking utility, which it still does, but evolved to identifying deals and sales.
A second example is RetailMeNot, a location-based deals app I’ve been using since forever ago.
The Austin-based company just introduced a new products section featuring curated products available at merchants with mobile-optimized websites. A product click brings the shopper to a page for completing a purchase and handling shipping details.
While starting as an app to provide location-based coupons, which it still does, RetailMeNot evolved so that manufacturers of products that sell items through other retailers can advertise directly to targeted mobile shoppers through the RetailMeNot app.
A third example this week is the acquisition by Verve Mobile of beacon software company Fosbury.
“We’re good at driving people to the store and we’re seeing beacons as an extension,” Tom Kenney, co-founder and president of Verve Mobile, told me yesterday.
Verve manages 4 billion ad impressions a day and the beacon capability addition will allow the company to extend the location-ad targeting into the store, based on product proximity, Kenney said.
While starting as an ad serving platform and working with thousands of advertisers, Verve is expanding from driving people to the store, which it will continue to do, to driving consumers in stores to the cash register.
While not related, ShopSavvy, RetailMeNot and Verve are good examples of how mobile commerce is evolving, while still staying the same.