Donate via social apps

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If you like using social networks, shopping online, and donating to charity, you’re in luck. There are now social shopping apps that allow you to do all three things at once. I’m Clark Palmer with your personal finance minute.

One social shopping app, Shopkick, allows your smartphone to wirelessly connect to a device in stores such as Best Buy, Crate and Barrel and Toys R Us. When the app detects that you’ve entered one of these stores, you receive rewards known as kicks just for visiting. You can then use these kicks to donate them to one of 30 different causes.

Socialvest is another example. You register with your email address on Facebook, then click on the Socialvest site first when shopping online. Selected retailers donate a percentage of your purchase to your giving account.

The companies behind these services want to make money too. Most of them negotiate with the retailers to receive a percentage of each purchase in addition to the charitable donation.

Why would retailers just give away money? It’s a way to show corporate social responsibility and build customer loyalty.

For more tips on donating to charity, visit I’m Clark Palmer.