Ever feel like your smartphone is permanently glued to your hand? Text messages, emails, social media … there are so many enticing reasons to stay connected. In fact, a Nielson study in 2018 found that the average person spends about 4 hours a day online.
It’s probably no surprise that we spend about 1 ½ hours of that time on social media. And we get it, social media is great (in fact, ACE Cash Express just joined Instagram!) But sometimes, all that aspirational viewing can lead to aspirational spending. Are you one of the 79% of Americans who have made an online purchase from your phone in the last 6 months?
There are so many ways to spend time and money on your mobile devices. Wouldn’t it be great if you could spend it improving your financial health?
Use Money Management Apps
Your bank most likely has a native app you use to manage your general finances. A statista.com study showed that in 2018, the most common reasons for using mobile banking apps in the U.S. were to view a balance, view recent transactions, make bill payments, and transfer funds between accounts.
If you want to do even more, or if you have multiple bank accounts, you can use financial apps to fill the gap.
Spendee: The App for Family Budgeting
Couples, families, and roommates will love Spendee. This budgeting app allows you to connect and track activity to multiple bank accounts and even multiple currencies. View transactions at-a-glance for multiple users—perfect for tracking multiple sources of income. You’ll get a better understanding of your spending habits with handy graphics that track your income and expenses. And, you can set budgets for a variety of goals: from paying down credit card debt to travel. Plans start for free, based on features.1
1As of July 2019.
Acorns: The App for Beginner Investors
If you’ve ever thought about investing your money but had no idea where to start, you’re not alone. Acorns is the penny round-up app that lets you invest a little bit each time you use your connected card. For instance: with every $3.82 coffee you buy, $0.18 would be credited toward the exchange-traded funds (ETFs) or bonds of your choice. If you have change to spare, it’s a good introduction to investing and a way to earn a little extra, too. Plans range from $1-3 per month based on features.2
2As of July 2019.
Venmo: The App for Check-Splitters
The days of handing over 2 (or more) cards at a restaurant could be over with the Venmo app. Venmo allows for real-time money transfers to anyone with the app. That means you could request money from friends or family at the dinner table and have the collective funds back in your account by the time you leave the restaurant. Transfers are typically complete within 30 minutes.3
3See help.venmo.com for details.
How to Save Money With Digital Deals
Even in the world of online shopping, couponing is alive and well. Today, there are even more ways to save money when you shop. You can find a list of some of our favorite retail deals in our post How to Earn Cash Back and Rewards Online When You Shop. But there are even more ways to save cash on your smartphone.
Digital Coupons and Promotional Offers
Bring couponing into the digital world with deal sites on your smartphone. For instance, with RetailMeNot, you’ll find discounts on some of your favorite retailers. Just search for your store or brand, and check the available links for valid coupons, promo codes, and cash back offers.
At The Krazy Coupon Lady , you’ll find deals and coupons that you can search by brand or product category. These offers are primarily for in-store purchases and are a great way to learn the art of serious couponing.
Loyalty Programs with Store Apps
Save at stores you frequent when you join loyalty programs. Most retailers have loyalty programs in the form of apps. Earn points and save money at fast food spots, clothing retailers, coffee shops, and more.
Take Online Surveys
Who doesn’t love to share their opinion on things they like (or don’t like)? With online surveys, you could earn money for sharing your opinion. And the best part? You can do it all from your smartphone. Check out Swagbucks to convert survey points into cash, gift cards, or PayPal credit. With Survey Junkie, you can take surveys in your spare time and earn points that add up, and you redeem for cash.
It’s time to put those hours of smartphone use to work for you. With smart use of apps, deals, and other digital savings opportunities, you’re well on your way to money management superstardom.