Fun and Rewarding Shopping and Investing Apps
Saving money and investing are both important. It’s clear that all of us should actively be doing both, but sometimes it can be a complicated and difficult process to navigate. Finding ways to save money is an essential part of ensuring a healthy and stable financial future. While these aren’t “high tech” suggestions, every little bit can help plus having a fun and user-friendly way is a step in the right direction. The good news is that there are plenty of apps available to consumers to manage your finances, save the spare change, get benefits from everyday purchases, and help you set and monitor financial goals.
Let’s take a look at these different apps to help you shop smart with cashback and rewards and easy ways to invest (while also learning about the process). Plus—the apps are easy to use, download and join.
iBotta is an app that scores high with its users, user-friendly, and available for both iOS and Android. It doesn’t cost anything to sign up, and they don’t spam you with emails. All you have to do is download the app and unlock the rebates at a large variety of stores. For example, if you are shopping at Walmart and want to purchase a pizza, you can search for pizza and offers will come up such as a DiGiorno pizza. Once you click on unlock it has you do a tedious task such as looking at two different types of pizza and click on your favorite one—then the rebate is unlocked! Once you purchase the pizza at the store, scan your receipt in, and the money will be deposited in your iBotta account. Once you are ready to withdraw the cash, you can transfer it to PayPal, Venmo, or use it to purchase gift cards at your favorite restaurants. You can also invite your whole family and complete challenges for the type of items you are buying to get extra cash. For a kickstart, use coupon code ircpcw, and you can receive a $10 welcome bonus.
This app is truly a jack of all trades. It offers you cash back, coupons, online codes and more for your favorite stores. The benefit is that if you are physically present at a location, you can look up the store and see what “in-store” coupons are offered and show them to the cashier. Visit their website or download their app: https://bit.ly/2bxAIXB
Drop is a handy app, and it has a user-friendly interface. It’s free and gives away millions in cash rewards every day. If you don’t rely heavily on reward credit cards and prefer to use your debit card this is a great alternative to still get rewards. It’s a great app if you spend your own money versus racking up credit card debt — every time you shop at certain stores you earn points by using your debit card, and double points for using your credit card. You can sign up by downloading the app from your app store and use coupon code lqf3h that’s advertised as “no strings attached” to get $5 right away in your account.
Ever thought of being a secret shopper? Mobee makes shopping fun because you get to go undercover as a secret shopper. Many consumers love it because you get to evaluate products, but you can also comment on customer service—and you will actually be able to see the results of your feedback. When you download the app and open it, you can see stores near you that will pay you to shop. When your shopping trip is over, you take a few minutes to answer 5-10 questions, and it’s done. The benefit is that you’re getting paid for a service, improving shopping conditions, improving customer service—when you would already be at the location. Download the app and use the coupon code SZHB to earn 300 points.
Swagbucks is another app that rewards you for the routine activities you would be doing online. You can earn rewards points by searching the web, shopping, watching online videos and taking short surveys that can be redeemed for gift cards. The polls you provide valuable insight for retailers because they actually listen to your opinions. A lot of bloggers and remote workers love this app because you can earn extra rewards while going about your daily routine. Use this link to get started: https://bit.ly/2R9S5Tw
Checkout51 is similar to iBotta. New offers are loaded every Thursday to your favorite stores. Once you go into the app, choose your offers and head to the stores. While Checkout51 has fewer offers, it’s also different from iBotta because it allows you to redeem offers at any store (iBotta has this option, but it can be limiting). Once you purchase the item upload your receipt to get cashback and transfer it into your bank account. Use this link to save money on groceries and get $5 for free: https://bit.ly/2A4geB6
Robinhood is one of the easiest and best free stock trading apps available today—and plays off the famous Robin Hood character for stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. If you like the idea of anyone feeling empowered to entering into the stock market, then this app is for you. Within Robinhood, it doesn’t give you access to a full range of investments like mutual funds, but it works great for stocks, ETFs, and the recently added Bitcoin options. It’s also a great learning tool to understand the stock market and how it fluctuates. When you are logged into the app, you can track your own stock investments as well as track stocks that are on your watchlist. Its straightforward interface allows you to search for any stock and own it without commissions or trading fees. Use this link to receive a free stock like Apple, Ford, or Sprint for free once you sign up: https://bit.ly/2SZ6XBu
Acorns is great for those that want to invest but have no idea what to do. It’s another app for beginners, and it allows you to link your bank account, track your regular spending, and “round up” purchases to the nearest dollar. This roundup is then transferred into your Acorns account to invest. You also have the option to move over additional money. Once the money is in your account Acorns will automatically build a portfolio consisting of stock and bond investments based on a brief questionnaire you complete when you sign up. It helps you create a diverse portfolio exclusively in ETFs while focusing on your investment goals. Use this link to download the app and receive $5 into your account from Acorns: https://bit.ly/2CpkZqv
Stash is different from Acorns because it allows you to make your own investment decisions while still havening a beginning level of knowledge. You can also start investing with as little as $5, and it helps you pick your investments while still educating you. The app includes educational articles to help you buff up your investment knowledge each time you access the app. Once you join, your investment goes into ETFs and single stocks which then they are curated into various investment themes like innovation or environment—while all being assisted by the built-in investment coach. Use this link to download the app and receive $5 to buy stocks: https://bit.ly/2A9E52j
Stockpile lets you buy and sell stocks like other apps, but it’s one of the best for your kids. It also allows you to gift single shares of stock and purchase fractional shares for .99 cents. You can invest in a portion of a share for a high-valued stock like Google or Apple without paying the high price. It’s great for families because you can turn investing into a family activity by teaching your kids about money, the stock market, and letting them buy shares or giving them a stock gift card, and they can use to grow their portfolio. Visit their website or download the app to sign up and learn more: https://bit.ly/1QXoYJp
Wall Street Survivor
While this isn’t an app, Wall Street Survivor is an educational website that teaching you the basics of the stock market by using a stock market simulation game. When you register on the website, you get $100,000 of virtual currency to start trading. Once you’re set up and have your virtual money, you can submit trades to the platform during the regular stock exchange hours and watch your portfolio rise and fall based on your investment decisions. They offer a variety of free courses to learn how to navigate the market. Visit their website to learn more: https://bit.ly/2a01G6i
As you know, each penny is precious, especially while trying to stick to a budget during the holiday season. Coupon clipping and meal planning are great ways to save money, but they’re time-consuming and not always the most efficient way to spend less. Luckily, these apps can help you save on essential ingredients for your holiday feasts and those perfect presents–while teaching you a thing or two! Remember, these apps are only a few of the options out on the market. However, these are a great place to start for shopping smart, saving and investing.