WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- We're still a couple weeks from Thanksgiving, but the holiday shopping season is underway. If you're looking for help, forget the computer. Just pull out your Smartphone.
More shoppers are turning to their phones to find the best deals, coupons and gift ideas, and retailers are catching on.
E-readers, video games and toys, oh my.
Buying gifts for the holidays can be stressful and expensive, but shoppers like Courtney Brown are becoming more frugal and tech-savvy. That's why she's looking for one thing.
"The best deal, absolutely," she said.
Getting coupons sent to your phone is one way to save bucks. In fact, many retailers, like Target, have released their own mobile apps that do just that and more.
"Target will send you coupons, stuff like that," Brown said. "That's the main reason I use that app to see the different coupons and the deals."
Target Executive Team Leader Chris Seitz says the store's mobile app has many features.
"They can look at the weekly ad. They can look at the gift list, recommendations that target.com has put together. They can look at daily deals in regards to hot items for the fourth quarter," Seltz said.
Other apps, like Shop Savvy, let you to scan a bar code with your phone's camera.
"If I see an object or a toy that my child wants, I'll scan it and see if maybe it's a cheaper price in a different location or if I'm getting the same amount," Brown said.
Or if that must-have gift on your list is sold out, "it will show you the different locations that you can go and find if it's out of stock at one location, maybe you can find it at another one, so it makes Christmas shopping just a little bit easier," Brown said.
And speaking of making shopping easier, make sure you don't leave your home without your smartphone on Black Friday. It could come in handy.
"With our Black Friday sales they'll be able to scan the store map that we hand out to see what type of door busters we have," Seitz said.
Soon, you'll be able to pay with your smartphone, too. Google Wallet is an app that lets you pay, simply by waving your phone over digital sensors. This holiday season, some major retailers will be testing that app in stores.