If there is one thing that I dislike, it’s shopping — I absolutely hate going to a mall to get something. I hate having to deal with crowds, no parking and all the other things that come with it. But, I do love to shop online; in fact, I will do about 95% of my Christmas shopping and gift shopping online if I can. It is so much easier to do and I will gladly pay for shipping to avoid the mall.
That’s why I got excited when I came across Karma, an application that you can use to send gifts to someone else. They make it very easy to pick out a gift and send it to someone, and best of all, you can do it all straight from your iPhone.
When you first fire up Karma, it asks to connect to your Facebook friends and if you are okay with this, you are really going to want to do it. You will see why a bit later, but it really makes the app more interactive and fun to use.
The next thing you are going to want to do is to figure out who you are going to send a gift to. You can browse your contacts on your iPhone, and Karma also gives you suggestions of people that you may want to give gifts. Since you connected your Facebook friends to the app, they give you suggestions based upon a few different categories to help you select someone. For example, you can see which one of your friends is having a birthday soon and you can choose them as a recipient. There are other categories such as Celebrations, New Job, Relationships and one called Tough Days.
Purchasing the Gift
Once you have selected a recipient, now it’s time to select what gift you are going to give them. There are a couple of ways that you can browse through the products on Karma. You can either see all of them at once or sort them by group or price. There are nine different categories to choose from and gifts range any where from $1 to $100.
- Selecting a Gift
Once you are done finding the gift that you like, now you have to pick the type of card that you want. There are eleven different types that you can choose from, most of them being the standard themes you would find in any card store. Then, when you find the card that you like, you can now write your message on the inside and personalize it to the person you are sending it to.
Delivering Your Gift
At this point you are just about done with your gift and now you just have to get it delivered. Karma makes this easy because you don’t have to enter in the person’s address. They will either text, email or Facebook the person you are sending it to and that person will enter where it should be shipped to.
I definitely like the fact that they do this because it gives you the opportunity to not worry about who you are giving a gift to. For example, I have an old high school friend who I saw is getting married and I would love to send him and his new wife something, except I have no clue what his address is, I just know the state that he lives in. This doesn’t hinder me from sending him the gift or having to ask him for his address and spoil the surprise. You can also have the message delivered to that person on a certain date and time, which also is a great feature to have, especially if you are buying it ahead of time or for a specific date.
Paying For Your Gift
When you finish delivering your gift, you can choose to either pay now for it or after the recipient has received it. Payment is done very easily by entering your credit card information, and there’s no need to worry because your information is secure with Karma. I would like to see an option to use Paypal as well, but that may come later. Once payment is taken care of, you are done and ready to purchase your next gift.
Can This Work?
This is one of the first apps that I have seen for the iPhone where you can purchase a gift and it take care of all the details for you. I found it very easy and intuitive to use and I definitely would use it again to purchase gifts.
In the future, if Karma is going to get more buy in, they have to have a wider selection of items both in selection and price point. There were a lot of gifts that were around the $30-$50 range, but I would have liked to see a wider selection in the $5-$10 range. The reason being is that I think this is a great app to send a small gift to someone very quickly. I think people will be more apt to use it for that reason, versus making a big purchase and sending it to someone.
I would love to see Karma grow and more people start to use it. I definitely think it has a place in the consumer space, but they have to stay creative and try to meet the needs of the masses. With the likes of Amazon and other online shopping retailers, they are up against some heavy, experienced hitters. But I like where they are going and I am excited to see what is coming for the app. It is a free download on the App Store, so go and check it out and let us know what you think!