With Thanksgiving passing into memory, we now have to prepare for one of the most joyous and festive holidays of the year: Christmas! And, for better or worse, Christmas is the season where we need to shop, shop, shop for gifts. Unfortunately, for those who don’t have the time or energy, shopping can be a big pain in the neck.
On the other hand, with the prevalence of smartphones and tablets, you could make the entire shopping experience much less stressful by utilizing a few key Android apps. Instead of wandering around a mall for hours on end, now you can shop at your own leisure right from your couch, your bed, or wherever else.
Looking for catalogs? Not sure what to buy? Seeking out a few deals and coupons? Want to compare prices to find the best value? I’ve got a little bit of each in the form of 8 free shopping apps for Android, so keep reading!
Amazon / eBay
At this point, I would say that it’s beyond arguable that Amazon and eBay are the two largest online shopping sites in the world. Amazon covers departments from Household Goods to Electronics to Office Supplies – it has everything and if you need something, there’s a 99% chance that Amazon has it. As for eBay, there’s just so much activity with over 100 million members.
The Amazon app offers a simple and clean interface for you to search and browse items, read reviews, compare prices, share items with friends, and make purchases. Over the years, Amazon has made their website into an online shopping haven, and their app is quickly reaching that same status.
If you intend to shop on eBay, the eBay app is nearly an essential. It makes it easy to search and browse the listings. If you need to check on past orders or manage your eBay activity, you can do that, too. And for those of you who aren’t just buying, you can also sell items with ease in the app.
Craigslist [No Longer Available]
Like eBay, Craigslist is all about user-to-user buying and selling. Though the listings on Craigslist aren’t as search-friendly as eBay might be, there are still a lot of great items to find and purchase. As long as you don’t need to buy a specific item brand new, you can browse Craigslist for the chance of coming across a fantastic item at an affordable price.
The great thing about Craigslist is that you aren’t limited to browsing. Using this app, you can put up your own personal ad telling others that you’re seeking to buy a particular item. In the US alone, Craigslist has over 60 million active members per month.
If you’re looking for deals that will absolutely blow your mind, you’ll love the Groupon and LivingSocial apps. For those of you who don’t know, Groupon and LivingSocial are services where retailers can offer up items for massive, limited-time-only discounts.
The Groupon app is a great way to receive daily updates on the latest deals. Restaurant discounts, salon and spa packages, membership coupons, clothing sales, vacation deals – you name it, you’ll find it. With this app, not only can you buy and redeem discount deals, but the app will track your deals and notify you when they’re due for expiration.
LivingSocial is like Groupon but with a greater focus on locality. It’ll help you find the best deals and discounts in your area. Clothing deals, restaurant promotions, activities and events–all of them are hand-picked by LivingSocial and delivered straight to you. Great for the solo thrifter and for families looking for excitement.
For even more coupon love, you can check out the The Coupons App. With it, you’ll always have the latest coupons and deals right at your fingertips–whether it’s for retail stores, restaurants, gas stations, and more. In particular, The Coupons App can give you heads-up notice of big sales, even before they go live.
The app lets you search and save coupons as well as letting you scan barcodes for price comparisons. It also comes equipped with a home screen widget that lets you browse through real-time coupons and daily deals. It can even keep you up to date on the cheapest gas stations around you.
ShopSavvy / RedLaser [No Longer Available]
Speaking of barcode and QR code scanners, here are two of the best on Android: ShopSavvy and RedLaser. Scanners like these allow you to gain instant access to information about the item you’re scanning. This information can be used to check online stocking options, price comparisons, sales, and more.
ShopSavvy claims to be the original barcode scanner for Android. With it, you just scan an object and you’ll find the best prices for that item, both online and locally. In their latest update, you can store your credit card information and use a one-swipe-purchase to instantly buy items from top retailers like Walmart, Target, and Rakuten.com.
RedLaser may not be the original, but it’s the best. Acting as both a barcode and QR code scanner, it can take a scanned item and search through thousands of online and local retailers to find the best prices for you. In addition to price charts, you’ll get product descriptions, reviews, ratings and more. Even buy things through the app if you’d like!
I hope that the holiday shopping season won’t be too hectic for you, but with these free shopping apps for Android, that hope can turn into a guarantee. Now you don’t have to worry too much about rushing to the store, fighting through big crowds and long lines, only to discover that certain items are all out of stock.
What do you think? Have you used these apps before? Any other apps that deserve to be on this list? Share your thoughts and comments with us!
Image Credit: Shopping Cart Icon Via Shutterstock