Shopkick’s 3-Million Milestone: Not Quite As Good As It Sounds

Written by Frank Hayes
February 10th, 2011

Retail check-in services have reached a sort of milestone. On Tuesday (Feb. 8), Shopkick announced that its users have used their smartphones to scan more than 3 million products at 250,000 retailers since the app became available less than a year ago. Shopkick also says at least 10 percent of its 750,000 users actually do a check-in on any given day. No question, there are lots of zeroes in those numbers—it’s clear that somebody out there is interested in scanning products for loyalty points, along with checking in at Best Buy, Macy’s, Sports Authority, Target, Crate & Barrel and other big retail chains.

Then again, a little math makes it all sound less impressive. Three million products scanned at 250,000 stores is an average of 12 products per store over a five-month period. That’s not exactly a viral phenomenon. And 10 percent of 750,000 users means about 75,000 people per day are using the app across the U.S. That’s a start. But at this rate, it’s going to take a lot more zeroes before check-in is something most retailers can’t afford not to check out.


3 Comments | Read Shopkick’s 3-Million Milestone: Not Quite As Good As It Sounds

  1. Richard Nedwich Says:

    ShopKick is an exciting tool for retailers, but it’s just one of many in the toolbox. Which demographic is most likely to use a check-in app on a smartphone? Is this the same demographic that shops in your store? Is the service promoted effectively?

    I agree the numbers are probably not there yet, but could get there if deployed by the right retailers and promoted in the right way.

    Last weekend I took my wife and kids shopping at Sports Authority for sneakers, and we must have spent an hour trying on different sneakers, and playing basketball and looking around the store. It wasn’t until we were walking out to the parking lot with our purchases that I happened to notice a sign for ShopKick. I didn’t see it on the way in, and never noticed any ShopKick signs inside the store.

  2. Ryan Says:

    While ShopKick represents a portion of the capabilities presented by mobile to retail, it’s little more than a placeholder strategy until retailers see what aspects of mobile are the most popular, and what suits their stores the best. Right now, ShopKick is a very small monetary investment that requires little effort and allows retailers to say they have mobile functionality while they eye the development m-commerce and craft their own brand specific strategy..

    Once retailers are able to put in place brand specific mobile experiences (whether through in-house development or partnerships), the features of ShopKick may be included as part of a brand loyalty program, but ShopKick itself will fall victim to 1st party applications and features. (Editor’s Note: The commenter works for AisleBuyer, another mobile vendor. His comment is quite legitimate, but wanted to add that context.)

  3. Evan Schuman Says:

    Editor’s Note: This is a note to someone who tried posting a comment to this story, using the name Kicker. They tried posting the comment using a false E-mail address (naughty, naughty). The nature of the comment was such that we needed to verify some of the information before approving the comment. The rules are much more stringent for someone trying to post anonymously. But, Mr. Kicker, we would very much like to discuss your comment with you so that we can attempt to verify the information. We will certainly keep your identity confidential, if you’d like, but we need to talk before we can do anything. Please E-mail me directly ( if you’d like us to be able to pursue this.


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