Many are familiar with the price saving app, Paribus, which launched last year with the goal of helping consumers take advantage of money-back guarantees among a collection of online retailers. While this app has proven to be popular among shoppers, there is a new player emerging that is taking advantage of the holes in this service. Pricerazzi Is Poised To Pass Paribus In The Race To Save You Money
Meet the much more convenient (and less invasive) competition, Pricerazzi, which provides savings on purchases from online and brick-and-mortar stores by comparing thousands of different deals from across the web. In comparison, Paribus searches just 20 online retailers for deals.
Pricerazzi's CEO, Declan McDonald, thought up the idea for the app at his dining room table when he was shopping for new kitchen appliances and launched the app in the US on April 26th of this year. After spending $7,000, he was offered a lifetime price guarantee. He then spent hours searching online for a better deal and was able to save $1,500. At that moment, he decided to turn this process into a full-time business.
McDonald aimed to create an app that can search every possible outlet that might have a better deal, just like he would. He knew that it would have to work outside of just online shopping, which is where Paribus falls flat. "Despite all of the ways you can shop online, people still like to buy things in-store." says McDonald. "Especially when it comes to big purchases like electronics and appliances."
The big ticket in-store purchases are also where Pricerazzi is seeing the most money-back savings occur, which complements findings from the U.S. Census Bureau that found only 7.3 percent of total sales in 2015 were from e-commerce, as well as data from stores like Best Buy that show only 25%-30%of their sales are online.
Convenience is also a key part of the app's ability to become part of a shopper's routine. "Most shoppers tend to make purchases at the same few stores," notes McDonald. "So most of our users like the ease of getting an alert on a purchase and then cashing in the savings during their next trip. We find that the stores don't mind that either because it helps build customer loyalty."
The way the app works is actually very different from Paribus. Users take a photo of their physical receipt or upload their online receipt after making a purchase and Pricerazzi scans the store barcode and price-model to search across the internet to find a lower price. Once the lower price is found, the user can show the difference on the app to the cashier (or email the online retailer) and claim the difference of what was paid and the lowest price. Depending on the length of the price-guarantee, some users have claimed multiple savings over several months.
This differs greatly from the competition as far as sharing personal information when uploading a receipt. For Paribus to check a receipt, it requires users to provide the company with access to their email account. Then the app scans the user's entire inbox to find the receipts from online purchases. You read that right ... it scans your entire inbox. Even if you are willing to have the app do this, which I was, if you delete the confirmation emails too quickly it misses them, which is annoying.
"Everyone likes getting back money, but many of us don't want to give away our privacy, or in this case access to our email, to get it." McDonald adds. "Our priority is helping you get the best deal in a way that is simple, secure and makes you feel at ease." That said, Pricerazzi is never automatic, so there is a trade off there.
Pricerazzi officially launched in the United States last month and has been operating in Canada for approximately six months. Since its inception, it has seen 15 percent growth month-over-month, which McDonald believes is a testament to its competitive advantage. During this time, the average user saw a savings of $53 per receipt (keeping in mind that ranges from purchases of HDTVs to toiletries) and some saved as much as 58% on their purchases.
While the app is completely free to download, the company does take a 15% success fee on of any money back as payment for its service. McDonald notes that this rate is also lower than Paribus' - as they charge 25%.
Currently, the app has raised over $360,000 through seed funding and recently received praise at the 2016 Collision Conference in New Orleans. With a growing user base and consistent updates to its platform, Pricerazzi is poised to become the clear favorite among ways to cash in on money-back guarantees.