TRAVEL HERE: I’M CUCKOO FOR SHOPPING APPS
Shopkick-ing at Best Buy
OK, so I’ve just collected my first walk-in points with Shop-kick and at pretty much the same time, I discover if you look through the online catalogs there, you get Shopkick points. I was in App Heaven. As Bill talked to the salesman about modems and routers, I browsed Best Buy’s catalogs on Shopkick. Among my surprise points I found a catalog page that said I could earn points for buying things at Best Buy and it sounded like Bill was going to buy enough stuff to take me to the maximum number of points. I was still in the skeptical mode, but I wasn’t going to ignore the possibility.
When Bill made his decision, he asked about price matching. The clerk said they were happy to match internet pricing. I hadn’t said much during the transaction, but being uber aware of shopping apps right that moment, I piped up and said, I’ve got Red Laser. Sure enough, I saved Bill $10. I asked about the Shopkick points and found out it was as easy as giving my phone number to the clerk. I’d arrived at App Nirvana. It would take a whole day to find out if it had worked, but I was already hooked.
Unhappy at Ulta
Next stop on our errand list was a return to Ulta. Now Ulta is not on Shopkick. (Hint, hint Ulta!) We were returning something that I’d bought for Mom and she’d never gotten the chance to use. I’m not much on returns, because I always run into some kind of problem and this trip was no different. First question: Do you have an Ulta Club Card? Yes, I belong to “the club at Ulta,” but quite frankly, I got tired of hauling around the wallet with all those loyalty cards and I certainly didn’t want them hanging from my keychain. I didn’t have my Ulta card with me and I’m pretty sure I didn’t have it the day I bought the terry turban for Mom. They put in my phone number, but apparently my card’s not linked to my number, because the results were nill.
Now in the clerk’s defense, she was really trying to help. She didn’t like putting me through the third degree. I’d already told her the circumstances of the purchase and she was very sympathetic. So next, she asked me if I’d charged it. I didn’t think so, but she tried to look it up anyway. Eventually, I decided that I’d either paid cash or written a check from Mom’s account. Neither of those helped in the least, but they could refund sixty cents.
Anyone else would have been mad at Ulta, but I was mad at Bill. I hadn’t wanted to return the thing in the first place. Not that I wanted it. I just wanted it to disappear. I didn’t want to deal with it. If it equals money, Bill expects me to deal with it.
I went home, found the check I wrote to Ulta from Mom’s account and my Ulta Card. Now I was loaded for bear. Of course, the nice girl who’d helped me earlier was long gone and I had another nice girl, but it meant going through the whole thing again. See this was all my fault. I’d bought it at another Ulta. I didn’t have my receipt. I paid for it with a check. And worst of all, I hadn’t used my Ulta card. We soon arrived at the same sixty cents I’d been facing earlier in the day. She meekly suggested I could speak to the manager. After all this, you can bet your booty that I was speaking to the manager.
Long story short, we went down the same road one more time, but at the end of it she called corporate and just for fun, they went through the same series of questions. I have another hint for Ulta. This was an $11.99 item. It was obvious the package had never been opened. It was a turban, so it’s not like they’d have to return it to the vendor like with used make-up. Exactly how much of their payroll that week went to paying four employees to go through the same set of questions with me? I eventually got my money back in the form of a merchandise credit, exactly what I asked for in the first place.
But I was really mad about the Loyalty Card business, so it’s a good thing I knew about FidMe by Snapp. Before I even returned to Ulta, I searched the Play Store and found it. I’d heard about FidMe in passing one day and couldn’t even remember the name of it or where I heard it, but I got lucky searching shopping apps and found it. Downloading was quick and with the few tentative pokes of my finger, I was adding loyalty cards to my app. (Ulta’s not on FidMe either. I had to create it. Geez Ulta, you need to get with the times!)
I’m collecting points on FidMe, too, but it’s not clear what I’m supposed to use them for. Apparently that part of the system is still under development. There’s also something called stamp cards that I really don’t understand and it has something to do with a code displayed at the register, so I’m keeping my eyes peeled. Part of my confusion may be related to the fact that FidMe started in Europe and stamp cards, whatever they are, may be all the rage there.
But this wasn’t all that app-ened! I haven’t told you about Shopkicking at the Galleria or discovering Cartwheel. Come back next week so I can give you a few more shopping hints.