NYC Recessionista’s Favorite Shopping Apps

Once I got an iPhone and started downloading various apps, I wondered if it would forever change the way we shopped. At first, the shopping apps didn’t really blow me away, but they’ve come such a long way since then. They’ve gotten so good that I regularly browse on them AND use them to shop. Shopping apps (and they way they’ve enhanced the consumer experience) are one of the first things I thought of when I was approached to be a part of the IBM Smarter Commerce campaign (see previous posts in the series here and here).

So I took a long look at the apps that I have on my phone and use on a daily basis, and I’ve rounded up my top 5 favorites to share with you:

Up first at number five … the Target appI actually enjoy shopping on the Target iPhone app more than I enjoy shopping on  The website can sometimes be hard to navigate and search for items, while the app has a clean design, is user-friendly and has a super easy checkout process. The menu and product categories are easy to scroll through, the product images are vivid, and sale items are well highlighted.

(Design by NYC Recessionista; screenshots courtesy of Apple & Target)

Next on the countdown at number four … the Retail Me Not app. As a recessionista, I love having access to tons of coupons and discount codes in one app. The layout is really easy to use, you can search by store, category or featured coupons, and they even highlight expiration dates for you.

(Design by NYC Recessionista; screenshots courtesy of Apple & Retail Me Not)

Coming in at number three … the Forever 21 app. I really dig the large, crisp images on this app. I love that you can browse the lookbooks that are regularly refreshed, and both products and prices are clearly displayed. I also love that you can connect to their blog right through the app.

(Design by NYC Recessionista; screenshots courtesy of Apple & Forever 21)

At number two is the Old Navy app … one of my favorites. Everyone knows I love to save, so I love that Old Navy puts their coupons and discount codes right on the homepage. They also have sharp product shots, and the ability to connect to both the Old Navy Pinterest page AND other Gap brands.

(Design by NYC Recessionista; screenshots courtesy of Apple & Old Navy)

And now for my number one favorite shopping app: the Sephora app. There is so much I love about this app — they have everything from virtual nail polish try-ons to video tutorials on how to do makeup. They’ve also got mobile-only offers, a scanner, free samples and staff picks.

(Design by NYC Recessionista; screenshots courtesy of Apple & Sephora)

So … what are your favorite shopping apps

I can’t wait to hear from all of you!

Editor’s Note: This post is part of a series I have in the works, all designed to share my personal story around the role technology and social media play in our lives as part of the IBM Smarter Commerce campaign. So, when you see posts about the project (they’ll all be tagged #MySmarterCommerce), please do jump right into the conversation in the comments and share your opinions! IBM will be following along in real time over the next 30 days, featuring the best contributions by you and me, and the best comments will win $50 gift cards from IBM just for joining the conversation.

PS – In the interest of full disclosure and just plain old honesty, I have been invited by IBM to share my honest thoughts and experiences around Smarter Commerce, and as part of this collaboration, IBM may provide me with product, access, content or other forms of remuneration.  All opinions are expressly my own. #spon