Key Ring: Tame Your Loyalty Card Jumble!
At some point after graduating college, I started accumulating a lovely pile of store loyalty cards, reward cards, member cards, and frequent flier cards.
Every marketer wants Jane or Joe Consumer to sign up for their special program, and the discount or savings is usually enough for me to sell out my own information.
Now that I have these special cards, I want to keep them with me because I don't know when I might be in this store or that store again.
I'm actually not that loyal!
But if I happen to be in a certain store, I sure do want the savings or points or stars.
For several years, I kept this stockpile in a mesh zippered baggie and I would flip through the assortment at the check-out counter. I detested this system, but I wasn't giving up any savings!
When I got a smartphone, one of the first apps I searched for was something to tame this card jumble!
Enter Key Ring from Mobestream Media, Inc. available for free for both iOS on the App Store and Android on Google Play.
I use Key Ring to store every one of those cards that I had previously kept in that extra zippered pouch. And that's all I use Key Ring for.
Sure, they tried to convince me that I could get extra savings by turning on My Locations, so they could push out notifications of coupons and offers near me. Sounded annoying! Buying products I don't need isn't really saving. That's why I keep a list for all of my shopping. I prefer being a focused shopper.
Oh, and they really wanted me to start using their app to create my shopping lists. Unfortunately for them, I had already done my research on Evernote. I have an entire Notebook of shopping lists, preferences, price comparisons, and helpful consumer tips in .pdf format all stored together quite conveniently in a database of my own creation. The Key Ring list feature just doesn't compete with my own OCD tendencies harmonizing with Evernote.
However, Key Ring's ability to wrangle all of these cards makes it one of my favorite apps!
Once you've created your account, click the + button in the top right corner.
Give Key Ring access to your camera and scan your first bar code. The camera will automatically grab the details and enter them into the app.
Then you select the store to go with this barcode. The Key Ring database has many stores already in there. Many. However, you can manually add the details for any programs not in the database.
You can add a description of the card if you like, but it's not required.
Finally, you can take a picture of the front and back of the card. Also optional.
And that's it. In just a few easy steps, you've captured that loyalty card information and you can shred that piece of annoying plastic. It never needs to take up space in your wallet or purse again!
Once you do have all of your cards into Key Ring, you may want to select a few as favorites. These cards will appear at the top of your list, which is nice since the app does have advertising at the bottom.
Just tap the card that you want to select as a favorite. In the top right corner, tap More. Then you'll see a list of options, including Add to Favorites. Tap the star icon to select that card. Tap Done. Now that card should be at the top of your list.
Barcode Scanning at the Store...
Using Key Ring at the store is pretty easy too. Most stores have a handheld scanner and that's what you're looking for. If you only have the option for a flat bed scanner, then just show the barcode ID to the cashier and they can type in the number.
I use the self checkout lane at Safeway a lot. I just hit the button for Key In Code, type in my Safeway digits, and the system thanks me.
The only member card I could not get rid of was my San Francisco Public Library Card. Their scanners won't read my iPhone screen with the card's barcode, and there's no option to type in my account numbers. I don't really mind keeping this card. I chose the design with penguins sliding through piles of books. I can't resist smiling every time I look at this adorable picture created by 3rd grader Amelia!
If you and someone else want to share every loyalty card, then you can just share the account.
Otherwise, you can select a card, choose Share Card and enter the email address of the recipient's Key Ring account. Easy to accrue points together!
The first time I used Key Ring, I spent about twenty minutes scanning barcodes and entering minimal information about each card. Adding a new card every once in a while takes two minutes tops! This app is easy to use.
Bottom line, for a free app Key Ring works well at this one task of clearing my purse and wallet from unnecessary loyalty card clutter! While the stores may not have my loyalty, Key Ring does.
Where did you get that Indy crochet doll?
If you like the crochet Indy in the picture, I bought him from Monkey Minion Press at the Phoenix Comic Con last year.
They have lots of yarn goodness and geeky prints and cards for sale online! If you want to visit them in person, here's their 2015 Convention Schedule.
This husband and wife team from Portland, Oregon were super nice and had so many crochet choices at their convention booth. I couldn't choose just one Star Wars crochet doll, so I opted for Indy.