Over the past few years since I was laid off from my full-time job, it’s become extremely important for our family to carefully make the most of every single dollar we spend – especially on food and personal care items that tend to add up quickly and where there are so many different choices and options. For the past year or so I’ve been using an iPhone app that I found to make my weekly grocery shopping lists – it’s easy to use and since I pretty much always have my phone with me, it’s simple to grab it and add items to the list whenever I need to. There are some other benefits over using pen and paper that I’ve discovered as well that make Grocery Gadget a ‘must’ for me.
- Name: Flixoft, Inc.
- iTunes Category: Productivity
- Current Version: 3.2.7
- Seller: Flixoft, Inc.
- Compatible With: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 4.2 or later.
- Rating: 4+
- Price: $3.99 (also is a free version available as well)
Grocery Gadget is more than just an app – it works in conjunction with their online portal to allow you a lot of flexibility in not only creating shopping lists, but providing you with the best overall shopping experience possible. Not only can you add items and check them off, but you can enter in prices at multiple stores, take and store photos of every item, categorize by aisle, link with online and printable coupons, and import ingredients for your favorite recipes!
My take on the app:
Every time I turn around, they’ve added something more useful to this app! I started off with the free version when I first tried it out, and then when I liked how it worked I upgraded to the paid version – which I feel is absolutely worth the few dollars in order to make life so much easier when it comes to budgeting for groceries. I don’t even use all of the features available in this app – like the coupons and recipes, but I love it anyway, and am glad that those options are there if/when I want them. I also like the online portal where I can easily make changes to my items at home and I know that my information is backed up as well.
A couple of things that make this app stand above others I looked at are the fact that you can simply scan barcodes and it will import product information for a lot of things right in there for you. It even has store brands like Meijer and Great Value in their database. Not every barcode is in there, but the majority of the ones I’ve scanned are. I should note that the barcode scanning isn’t available on the iPhone 3G – which was one huge plus for me when I upgraded to my iPhone 4 in January. But even with my previous phone, I could type the barcode in manually and it would still lookup and import product details, which was much faster than typing in those details myself.
I generally shop at two different stores so I like that you can mark which products are available in which stores. One thing that I didn’t realize until now is that you can also input different prices for the same product at two different stores – that’s something I had wanted to be able to do, so I’ll have to start updating my lists. I love that the app learns your store layout as you shop so that items are in the order that you buy them. Our Meijer store is in the process of completely renovating and re-organizing everything, so I know it’ll take a couple of shopping trips for the app to learn the new layout, but I’m glad that it’ll make those changes on its own as I shop.
I love that you can put photos in for the different products. I never remember the exact kind of deodorant that my husband uses, but now I can simply make sure that the item I grab off of the shelf matches the photo on my list and I know I’m all set. And vice-versa – if my husband needs to do the shopping, he loses his excuse of, “but I don’t know all the stuff that you usually buy!”. I can make a list, share it with his phone, and he has everything right at his fingertips, complete with photos to ensure that he brings home the ‘right’ products too.
Probably the biggest thing that I use this app for though, is budgeting. I can see as I’m making my list exactly how much I need to spend, so I can adjust quantities or items as necessary. Then while I’m shopping, I can compare the total amount on my list with what I’m adding to my cart so that I make sure I don’t go over budget. It’s been a huge help during these months when my grocery budget has been so tight and I have to make the most out of every penny I spend.
If there were any improvements that I’d like to see in the Grocery Gadget app, they would include finding a good way to deal with items like produce and deli products where the price is based on weight, not set per item. And it would be awesome to be able to incorporate or import sale prices somehow. I haven’t used the coupon feature mainly because the store that I do most of my shopping at (Meijer) isn’t included, so I’d love to see that as an option too.
The bottom line:
Grocery shopping has been made so much easier since I started using Grocery Gadget – and I can’t imagine doing my weekly shopping now without it. It keeps me on track with budget, ensures I don’t buy the wrong variety or type of something and lets me track and even analyze where our grocery dollars are being spent.
For more information, you can visit their website at http://www.grocerygadgets.com.
Check back next Thursday for another iPhone app review…
This is not a sponsored or compensated post – I purchased this app on my own and was not asked to write about it. I simply want to share information about it on my own – all opinions here are 100% mine.