Coupon Banker app aims to save shoppers money, bolster Billings businesses

BILLINGS — With more than 60 local businesses, 35 active coupons, and 1,000 consumer users at the time of publishing, Coupon Banker app founder and developer Ben Smith is chiseling away at his corner of the Montana-owned market.

“What if you had a coupon, but you don’t really want it? Maybe you want to trade it for another one you do want,” said Smith. “It’s kinda like when you’re collecting and trading card games.”

The 18-year software developer said he patented the coupon trading app, which allows users to exchange, stack, and redeem coupons at local small businesses, approximately two years ago.

“It’s like saving money gamified,” said Tucker Veltkamp, founder of TOPZ Sandwich Company. “It makes me really excited about, kind of, the tech scene in Billings, but also local business at a time where local businesses need support.”

Veltkamp was the first Billings business owner on the Coupon Banker app. He said given current economic conditions, he believes coupon shopping is making a return with the help of software like Smith’s app.

“(Couponing) could be here to stay for a while,” said Veltkamp, “Sometimes (customers) can cash in a whole meal.”

While Smith currently estimates that there are $135,000 in savings on the app, he said the idea has simple origins.

“My mom used to clip coupons,” said Smith, “She put all of these coupons on the top of her car … and I have vivid memories of picking up coupons along the highway at five, helping my mom save all those because they had value.”

Along with helping consumers like his mom save money, he said he hopes to bolster small businesses in Billings so they are able to compete with larger businesses.

“They’re just trying to, y’know – raise their kids, live their lives, and support their families,” said Smith, “Anybody that works for a big company are doing the same thing, but some of the profits, a lot of the profits go to the shareholders, the unknown, when you go to Amazon or Walmart.”

Coupon Banker is currently available on the Apple and Google Play app stores.

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