By  on July 1, 2009

BOSTON — As a marketing tool, student discounts have been great in theory — but difficult to standardize and draw conclusions from because they often relied on a clerk informally checking a college ID.

Edhance.com, a Web site where members register up to five credit and debit cards and have their student status directly verified through university database partnerships, hopes to automate the process — and at the same time provide retailers with valuable insight into the buying patterns of an all-important demographic. The estimated 13.6 million U.S. college students, ages 18 to 30, represent about $53 billion in discretionary spending, according to the 2008 Alloy Media + Marketing College Explorer study.

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