Keeping a coupon book is frustrating. Deals have expiration dates and sorting through junk mail is tedious, and not to mention bad for the environment. Nearly 100 million trees are cut down annually to make junk mail in the U.S., according to the Bay Area Recycling Outreach Coalition.
Yowza!!, a location-based mobile coupon app, was designed to reduce mail waste and help consumers find deals.
Greg Grunberg, who has starred in television series like “Heroes,” “Alias” and “Felicity,” conceived the idea behind the app after a frustrating trip to Bed Bath & Beyond. Upon reaching the cash register to check out, he realized that he left his coupon in the car. The cashier refused to give him a discount without the coupon, so he vented his frustrations on Twitter.
A string of tweets led Grunberg to get in contact with August Trometer, an app programmer, and entrepreneur (and future CEO) David Teichner.
“Our belief is our core user is a mom, and it’s mom who’s got very limited time on her hands,” Teichner said. “Because of that, if you see the app, you see it’s really simple and easy to use.”
Yowza!! includes both national chains such as McDonald’s, Big 5 Sporting Goods, and Dunkin Donuts and variety of small, local businesses.
The free location-based app displays deals within a 50-mile radius. Unlike major couponing sites like Groupon and Living Social, Yowza!!’s users don’t need to buy deals and aren’t pressured to redeem coupons before they expire. The app is simply a database of coupons available at your fingertips.
“Our belief is through our app we can, one, be a lot more effective for retailers and two, not have to kill so many trees,” Teichner said.