I received quite a few comments in response to my post about whether small businesses risk being Grouponed to death by participating in daily-deal coupons. My sense is it is nowhere near a no-brainer, and that businesses have to carefully consider whether the “opportunity” is worth it.
Nevertheless, it can be a great opportunity (without quotation marks) for some small businesses. The following is anecdotal evidence.
I bought an Urban Dealight coupon for spa services provided by a woman working out of her home. After the appointment, I asked about her experience offering a daily-deal coupon. She raved about Urban Dealight and is thrilled that she decided to work with them. She chose them over LivingSocial or Groupon because they were better suited to her very small, home-based business – in fact, the larger ones weren’t interested in promoting her offer.
She capped the available coupons at 150, which sold out. She later received calls from potential clients who missed out on the deal, but wanted to schedule services at her standard rates. Prior to the coupon, she hoped for 10 appointments per week. As soon as she issued the coupon, she jumped to 18-20. She figures that some of the 150 people who bought the coupon won’t end up using it, which boosts her revenue-per-client average.
She beams when she talks about her growing business and says it has had two distinct phases: “before Urban Dealight and after Urban Dealight”. I’ll probably schedule another (full price, this time) appointment with her in the future and it will be interesting to see if her perspective as changed as she starts to see how much repeat business the coupon generates.