How Starbucks got it right

A classmate of mine had a great post on mobile apps vs. mobile optimized sites. I tend to prefer mobile sites because I HATE having to download a new app each time I want to make a purchase.

There are very few brands that I have actually taken the leap with and downloaded their branded app. I really want to get a sense of added value if I am letting a brand take up real estate on my phone. Starbucks recently became one when I was sick of waiting in the long line a few times a week (first world problems, I know). I kept seeing this little sign that said something like “skip the line, and order ahead,” why on earth I hadn’t done this the first time is beyond me.


Finally this past week I decided to bite the bullet and download the Starbucks app. here are 3 ways in which it has immediately provided me with value:

1.) I can now automatically fill up my virtual gift card when it gets below a certain dollar amount.

2.) I can order ahead and pick up my order from the kiosk and avoid lines.

3.) It automatically pops up on my payment when I am near my “home store,” which reminds me to use the payment option and earn stars for their loyalty program

Because I am new to the Starbucks app the whole loyalty issue that happened this week hasn’t really had an influence on me, except that the current promotion has allowed me to be a “gold star” patron for the next year. Apparently they have changed their reward earning system to dollars spent vs. transaction numbers. The internet is buzzed with people mad about the new system but I wonder if it will really have a negative impact int he long run.

What about you? Which brand apps do you have on your phone?




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