Your wallet is bulging with loyalty cards from supermarkets, department stores, and other retailers. In this electronic age, there's a better way to store those cards than filling your wallet with all that plastic: load them on your smartphone via a mobile app.
When it's time to present your loyalty card at a store, simply flash the mobile app at the register where the salesperson can scan the appropriate barcode. Not all merchants are compatible with all loyalty card apps, but a growing number are jumping on the bandwagon. Such apps make it easier and more convenient to collect your rewards and cash it on your loyalty cards.
Let's look at two loyalty card apps that work with iOS and Android devices.
The iOS version displays a list of some of its supported loyalty cards, while both the iOS and Android editions show you discount offers from various merchants. In both versions, you get started by clicking on a link to add a card. A list of frequently added cards pops up; if your card appears, select it. Otherwise, you'll have to search for it.
For my first attempt, I chose Best Buy, which appears among the frequently added cards. You can either scan the member ID barcode on your card with your mobile device's camera or add its number manually. Scanning the card was a quick and accurate process, so there was no need for me to manually enter the number. I could also take snapshots of the entire front and back of the card and add notes about the card.
When you want to show the loyalty card's barcode to a merchant, simply tap on the entry for the store in Stocard. The cashier or salesperson scans the barcode recorded with your card's entry, no plastic required. On a device with a fingerprint reader or other means of security, you can even enable the built-in security in order to access the Stocard app.
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At the main screen, tap on the Add button to add your first card. In this case, I choose to add a Kohl's card, but this card doesn't include a barcode, so I had to add the information manually. I was then able to take snapshots of the front and back of the card.
Tapping on the entry for the Kohl's card displayed my membership ID as well as the front and back images, which I could tap on to enlarge. The screen for the card also showed me the latest circular with the current sales and promotions.
Both Stocard and Key Ring support a variety of merchants and make it easy to add loyalty cards, helping us thin out our big, bulging wallets.
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