Shopkick, an incentive-based shopping app, will now give consumers rewards just for browsing (and buying) from its partners’ pages.

It’s an interesting development on its current offering, which does the same but for real-world visits to retailers stores on the high street, giving consumers “kicks” – translating to free gift cards – for walking into store, scanning products in the aisle and purchasing at the registers.

Users of the app will now earn kicks for visiting a mobile partner, browsing mobile offers and products and, of course, purchases, which inevitably reap the biggest bounty.

According to Shopkick, whose current partners include Boxed, eBay, Groupon, Spring among others, it’s been a way of introducing mobile-ready retailers to a new audience in a “unique way”. Beta results have been promising; 78% of consumers said they would visit a new mobile retailer to get kicks, while 67% said they “may sneak something extra” in their online cart to snag a few extra reward points.

“By being the only company who offers rewards for mobile browsing, we are innovating in the arena where consumer attention is increasingly focused,” said Bill Demas, CEO of Shopkick, “Rewards give users value back for the time they spend engaging with us and our partners – and everyone wins.”

Boosting intent

The announcement is indeed a win for innovation in mobile product discovery and new customer acquisition, and that being the case, it’s unsurprising to hear that mobile affiliate and performance specialist Button is behind the new technology, which does the legwork in connecting Shopkick to its retailer partners.

“Intent to purchase, whether it’s shown through a search, inspired by an article, or created through offering rewards, is what retailers are trying to tap into anywhere they can in mobile,” commented Button co-founder and CEO, Mike Dudas.

According to Shopkick, some of its top beta users have already spent “hundreds of dollars” in a single visit on “everything from fruit snacks to refurbished Macs”. John Toskey, director of eBay’s Partner Network, said he was excited to see how the app’s “engaged and loyal” customer base would affect sales on the auction site’s mobile web and mobile app platforms.

“Going into back-to-school and holiday seasons, we have high hopes for this partnership,” he added.

By releasing the update, Shopkick also claims to be combating “race-to-the-bottom price war tactics” favoured by many other shopping apps. Instead, using the kick-based reward system, the company keeps it partners’ brand and margins intact, encouraging discovery, consideration and purchase.

“Think of every time you’ve checked out an interesting product on your phone,” said Demas, “Now think of what you’d do the next time if it’d help you get closer to a free latte or Coach bag. That’s the magic.”