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Simon Malls, Zoomingo team up to help shoppers save money

Leading mall operator Simon Malls is partnering with mobile shopping application Zoomingo to help shoppers save money during the 2013 holiday shopping season.

Zoomingo enables users to find sales at local retailers and earn points that can be redeemed for rewards. Simon Property Group will be promoting the app to shoppers in select markets via in-mall posters, banners and other signage encouraging shoppers to download the app.

“Like most major players in this space, Simon is seeing the huge role that mobile is now playing for shoppers,” said Shirish Nadkarni, CEO and co-founder of Zoomingo, Waltham, MA. “A recent study from Deloitte suggested that almost 70 percent of smartphone users were planning to use their device for shopping purposes.

“Mobile has become a huge resource for shoppers in helping them make their shopping decision,” he said. “I think the key activity the people are engaging in is people are looking for local sales events.

“Clearly it makes sense to make sure that their shoppers have access to the best deals to drive foot traffic into their malls.”

Simon Property Group is the largest mall operator in the United States and owns or has an interest in more than 325 retail real estate properties in North America and Asia.

Check-in rewards
Beginning in November, Simon will promote the Zoomingo app in key California and Washington markets.

Shoppers in these markets will be alerted to sales and deals available at the retailers in those malls.

Shoppers can also earn bonus Zoomingo ZPoints, which are redeemable for gift cards, when they check-in at these properties. Several retailers will also provide rewards via the app.

The partnership with Zoomingo is part of Simon Property Group’s overall strategy to broaden its reach beyond its proprietary digital channels and drive incremental traffic to its malls.

For example, Simon Malls recently signed an agreement with Mobiquity to leverage Bluetooth technology in its malls to recognize mobile users and be able to send them branded messages and offers from retailers.

Mobile shopping
Zoomingo culls from retailers’ sales events, weekly ads, Sunday circulars and coupons to identify deals for the app and is updated daily.

Zoomingo enables users to find sales and deals from more than 50,000 retail stores including Target, JCPenney, Nordstrom and Kohl’s.

The experience can be personalized when users select which stores they like to shop at and what kinds of items they are interested in.

The app has one million users.

Simon Malls will also be providing Zoomingo with exclusive deal information from the retailers within its malls.

“Mobile is becoming a go-to resource for shoppers and retailers are clearly recognizing that,” Mr. Nadkarni said. “In the past, retailers spent on local newspaper advertising to advertise their sales but that audience is declining rapidly, it is an aging audience.

“Retailers are really now looking to mobile to reach younger audiences,” he said.

“Mobile shoppers tend to spend more than the average shopper out there, so mobile has definitely become a very attractive space for retailers to advertise their sales events.”

Final Take
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York