Daily Deals and Group Buying- 2 Excellent Ways for Baby Boomers to Save Money
In the last few years, “daily deals” and “group buying” sites such as Groupon and Living Social have become all the rage so much so that Groupon recently turned down an offer to be purchased by Google for approximately $6 Billion! That’s Billion with a B! The basic idea behind theses sites is that they offer a deal such as some Karate classes that retail for $50 and sell them for $25. Some other common deals include deals on massages, food, entertainment, hair salons, and the like. If enough people purchase the coupon (or Groupon in the case of Groupon.com) then it becomes valid and drives a surge of business to the retailer while offering the customer a stellar deal (minimum of 50% off). This encourages people to share the the deal with their friends which is why these sites have taken the internet and shopping world by storm.
What makes these sites so popular and fun is that it’s a mystery what the next daily deal will be. It’s also free to sign up to receive the daily deals so the sites grow pretty quickly. Buying the daily deal once you receive the email is as simple as a few clicks of the mouse. Sometimes the daily deals are for online stores where you use the coupon as a code in the shopping cart.
These sites have sort of changed the “Sunday Coupon” section as a way to buy. With more and more people on their smart phones accessing the internet, the popularity of finding businesses based on people buying coupons will only grow in the years to come.
1. Recently, someone purchased a little two day getaway on Living Social for half the price. What was awesome about this deal was that it included a lot of upgrades for the room, free breakfast, and a $50 room credit which paid for dinner at the resort’s fine dining establishment. Living Social has a weekly travel deal called “Living Social Escapes” which showcases regional vacation destinations based on where you’ve signed up for. This is a great way to find a killer deal on a last minute vacation and usually the deal will allow you to book the reservation after purchasing the coupon at a future date that’s convenient for you.
I’ve signed up for several of the group buying sites, although Groupon is the one I buy the most from. Here’s a run down on them:
2. Eversave – sign up and you’ll receive a $5 credit. Also offers a related coupon website for checking out coupons and printing them. Eversave has multiple offers per day and allows you to purchase the “daily deal” after the day it’s offered.
Eversave usually has more deals than Groupon offers.
3. Groupon – Groupon started the “group buying” craze back in 2008 when it launched. Currently in over 91 cites and 23 countries, it’s growing rapidly and has attracted plenty of venture capital money and potential takeover offers. While most deals are for food, salons, and sports events, there are usually deals for nearby cities as well so the potential offerings are getting more varied. They’re also in the process of adding multi-day deals for some “Groupons” (as the daily deals are called).
4. Seize the Deal – Some of their recent daily group buys include massages, tickets to the Nutcracker ballet, restaurant deals and tickets to the Texas Motor Speedway. Some of their deals are up for several days before closing. I haven’t purchased anything from this one yet but I like seeing what they offer every day.
Living Social is the main competitor to Groupon in the group buying space. In 2010, they grew rapidly by hiring new staff members by the hundreds. These salespeople fan out over their respective cities and find local businesses and focus on fun and exciting deals. They don’t allow just any business so they have a much more selective process for choosing deals. They also have the “Living Social Escapes” which are weekly vacation deals. I’ve purchased one as stated earlier and they’re spectacular. The purchasing process is easy and the site is attractive.
The structure of these sites is pretty similar in that you receive an email then click to a page which details what exactly the coupon gives you, the cost, details, etc. Since you sign up for an account, you can store all your daily deal purchases in the site as well as choose when you’d like to use them. Printing them is a breeze with just a few clicks of your mouse. It’s also possible to purchase these daily deal coupons for friends and family as a gift.
Everyone is into saving money with the economy still in taters and unemployment being so high. Group buying sites are a great way to shop, explore new businesses, and find great deals on things you’d be buying anyway. Daily Deals are hot. This space will continue to evolve and has already changed online shopping forever.