Palo Alto, Calif. Shopkick, the largest location-based shopping app that rewards shoppers simply for walking into stores, today welcomes small local stores and coffee shops into its revolutionary retail program, which already includes Target, Best Buy, Macy's and many other leading national retailers. Sponsored by Citi, shopkick will install its small shopkick signal box for free at the first 1,000 selected stores to enable its beneficial walk-in rewards program.
Interested stores in launch cities – Austin and Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas; Chicago, Ill.; Detroit, Mich.; Los Angeles and San Francisco Bay Area, Calif.; New Orleans, La.; New York, N.Y.; Seattle, Wash.; and Washington, D.C. – should apply at www.shopkick.com/local in the next 30 days. Shopkick is excited to have new retail stores, coffee shops, bakeries and yogurt shops join its growing coalition of partners.
Shopkick, the first coalition rewards program in America, now works for both large and small retailers alike. Smaller local businesses with repeat customers, such as coffee shops or cafes, can now reach and reward shoppers just for walking into their stores, with no out-of-pocket expense. Paper loyalty punch cards can be a thing of the past.
"We will do for small and medium-sized local stores what we have done for large, national chains: drive foot traffic. It's the single, hardest problem to solve – and the most valuable driver of success – for both retail and service businesses," said Cyriac Roeding, co-founder and CEO of shopkick. "With shopkick, stores also have the potential to increase basket size and margins, improve shopper engagement and build customer frequency. Shopkick's new program will help small and medium businesses in a big way."
Citi, through its Citi Ventures unit, was an early investor in shopkick.
"Our work with shopkick demonstrates one of the ways we are working to drive growth for our clients and for our company," said Christopher Kay, Head of Ventures, Citi Ventures. "We invest in cutting-edge companies and work with them to deliver new experiences for clients designed around their increasingly digital and mobile lives. Shopkick is the leading mobile shopping app and drives measurable foot traffic to its retail partners. We're happy to help make that shopper engagement and customer retention available to smaller businesses."
A hundred small and medium-sized businesses in three cities have already been involved in a pilot program for the past few months. "For years, we've relied on expensive, untargeted ads to try to attract new customers and paper punch cards to reward our loyal buyers," said Chris Whirlow, owner and proprietor of Yogurt My Way. "Now, we not only have a great way to let new customers know about us, but we can thank them for visiting -- and tie our loyalty and rewards points to loyalty programs like Best Buy, Target, Macy's and Facebook Credits. It's great!"
In order to provide high-value rewards to consumers for actual walk-ins, the shopkick app, combined with the shopkick Signal – an inaudible sound emitted from a patent-pending device located in each participating retailer – verifies a user is in-store and then awards shopkick's rewards currency "kicks." This ensures that marketing dollars put into the shopkick program are being spent to reward customers who are actually present in the store, something not possible with traditional location-based applications that rely on GPS technology that has an error radius of 50-1,000 yards on mobile phones.
Kicks are awarded for checking in to more than 3 million businesses nationwide, with highest-value walk-in rewards available at the more than 2,500 retail and 160 mall locations that make up shopkick's Retail Partner Network. Walk-in rewards are available in all 50 states at select Target, Best Buy, Macy's, American Eagle Outfitters, Sports Authority, Crate and Barrel, Wet Seal, west elm and Simon Property Group mall locations. Kicks earned can be redeemed for in-store gift cards, song downloads, movie tickets, hotel vouchers, Facebook Credits to play games online, donations to 30 different causes and charities and more.
Launched in August 2010, shopkick quickly became the largest location-based shopping app in America and reached 1.8 million users within a record 10 months since its launch. The shopkick App is available for free on the iPhone from the App Store at www.itunes.com/appstore/ and on Android Market at http://shopkick.com/android.html.
shopkick, Inc. is a Palo Alto-based startup funded by Kleiner Perkins' iFund, Greylock Partners and Reid Hoffman, founder of LinkedIn, and investor in Facebook and Zynga. In August 2010, shopkick launched the first mobile application that hands consumers high-value rewards, offers and exclusive deals at shopkick's national retail partners simply for walking into stores and malls. Even more rewards can be earned for scanning partner brand products at over 250,000 stores nationwide. In combination with a groundbreaking new location technology called "shopkick Signal", the app can verify location within feet, and because the detection occurs on the phone, privacy of presence information is completely in the users? control. Shopkick's growing partner alliance includes Best Buy, Macy's, Target, American Eagle, Crate & Barrel, The Sports Authority, Wet Seal, West Elm, Simon Property Group, Kraft Foods, Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Intel, HP and The CW. shopkick is the only 100% performance-based marketing platform in the physical retail world, with measurable foot traffic and transactions at stores. The app grew to 1 million users in its first six months. The free shopkick app is available for the iPhone and Android.
Citi, the leading global financial services company, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management. Additional information may be found at www.citigroup.com.
Headquartered in Palo Alto and Shanghai, Citi Ventures is a unit of global financial services company Citi. The Citi Ventures team partners with Citi businesses internally and with leading companies externally to identify, develop, and commercialize the highest new growth opportunities around the world that directly support Citi's emerging strategic directions.