Zoomingo turns shopping into money-making game

Our wallets normally downsize after spending some quality time and money at the local shopping mall. Zoomingo wants to change that.

The mobile application that discovers discounts on clothing, jewelry, handbags and other items at thousands of local retail establishments has released an Android update that allows shoppers to find the best deals by mall location. A virtual geofence notifies users when they are near a mall, and once there, users can play a “Spin N’ Win” game for a chance at a $50 daily cash prize and earn points toward a weekly prize.

This is somewhat similar of Zoomingo’s “Hot or Not” game, which was released in June and allows you rate the deals for a chance to win weekly prizes.

The update will also seek out Black Friday deals throughout the month as they become available. Also new is a “Best of Pinterest,” where Zoomingo identifies the most popular pinned items on Pinterest from all the top retailers.

It’s the latest rendition to the successful app started by CEO Shirish Nadkarni last year. Nadkarni, a well-known Seattle entrepreneur who previously co-founded Livemocha and TeamOn Systems, told GeekWire that Zoomingo is experiencing 100 percent quarter-over-quarter growth and has reached 500,000 users and 1.3 million total items in its database. Nadkarni raised $1.3 million from Benaroya Capital and others last fall.

The app is currently in the top ten for its category in the Apple AppStore and a featured app on Google Play. The company also released an Android app specifically built for tablets last month.

I downloaded the app, titled “Local & Black Friday Deals,” and played around with it. Logging in with my Facebook got me 1,000 points and I immediately racked up more points by playing “Hot or Not.” Man, I love points.

The app itself is easy to use and pretty robust. I love the “recent price drops,” section and how you can search all sorts of brick-and-mortar stores and see what’s on sale. So much for going through Sunday’s newspaper browsing for coupons and good deals — this is the future of bargain-hunting.