Have you considered using Groupon to promote your business? Here is what you should know before making the decision.
What is Groupon
Groupon is a coupon site offering daily deals for a very good price. Because of its popularity among the consumers, you may get thousands of new customers, just by having your deal listed on the site for 24 hours. This is very appealing for both parties, and can help your business to address new audience in a very short period of time.
How does it work?
Let’s say that you are offering your products on the site for $20. Groupon will then offer on their site a voucher for $20 but the customer will have to pay only $10 for it. On top of that Groupon will probably take half of it for themselves, so you will make only $5 on the product worth normally $20. Sounds like a bad business? Yes, and No. There are many successful stories among the businesses who wanted to promote their products and services on Groupon. If you are a startup business you will get immediate attention of hundreds or even thousands of customers, and there is a good chance that, if your services are good, many of them will come back at later time to buy more products from your site. Groupon does not charge you any fees at front, so the risk is minimal. Now, compare this to the campaign in your local TV or yellow book (is someone still doing this?). In both of this cases you need to pay for the advertisement at front, not having any guarantee that you will be recognized and that this will generate sales on your site. Now, Groupon does not guarantee anything either, but at least you will not pay for it at front.
Mistakes you should avoid.
One of the local haircut salons decided to promote their services on Groupon by offering haircut for half the price. Within 24 hours they have sold many hundreds of vouchers for a haircut: much more than they expected. In the following weeks, all of those customers started to contact them in order to schedule an appointment for a haircut. Due to the high volume of customers they were unable to provide service in a timely manner. As a result, the customers were unhappy asking for their money to be refunded, but also gave a lot of bad press to this local hair salon saying that they were unprofessional. The biggest mistake here was lack of planning of how many customers they could serve at once. To avoid this mistake, you need to plan carefully how many products you can process in timely manner, and discuss this with Groupon. You can set the limit that only, let’s say, 100 vouchers can be sold on the site.
Another thing you should take into consideration is to calculate your expenses versus the benefits for your company. The price for which you will offer vouchers on Groupon site probably will not leave a lot of margin (if any) on your profit. The whole idea behind it is to get attention from those customers, so they will come back and buy products on your site again. If they bought the voucher on Groupon it means that they are interested in your products, and now you just need to make them to come back in the future. This is your five minutes of attention you have got from the whole new crowd. Use it wisely by offering good quality products, and perhaps some other content on your site (coupon…but this time raised in DecoNetwork?)
Are people still using Groupon?
Since Groupon was opened in 2008 it had its ups and downs. It was definitely most popular in 2011: only a year after Groupon refused an offer from Google to sell it for $5.75 billion! Beginning 2012 the problems occurred, and just by looking at the stock price (it went down from $26.19 per share in November 2011 to as little as $2.76 in November 2012) you can tell that Groupon was facing huge challenges, but 2013 is much better for them, and the situation seems to be stabilized and future secured. It is definitely worth taking Groupon into consideration in your marketing strategy as millions of people every day are looking on their site to find a new deal.
How to start?
First, you will have to contact Groupon by filling out this form: https://www.grouponworks.com/get-featured You can also give them a call on this number: (888) 582-4354 Remember, Groupon is quite big company and they can be selective in choosing who they want to work with. Be persistent, and do not give up if they will not contact you back initially.
How to use Groupon in DecoNetwork?
Once you will sell your vouchers on Groupon site, you just need to add functionality in DecoNetwork to use them. Using Gift Certificate option is a perfect fit for that. You can import all of your vouchers from the CSV file in Manage Fulfillment > Settings > Manage Gift Certificates > CSV Import
On the next page you can define the value assigned to the imported codes, and the dates between which those codes are valid.
Your customers will be able to use this code during the checkout as shown below: