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Tim Peter Thinks

Tim Peter

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November 28, 2011

Biznology asks "Are Daily Deals Sites a Good Deal for Your Business?"

November 28, 2011 | By | No Comments

My latest post over at Mike Moran’s Biznology blog asks “Are Daily Deals Sites a Good Deal for Your Business?” Given the popularity of deals sites in the travel space, it’s well worth the read.

Tim Peter

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June 14, 2011

What's the deal? More thoughts on deal sites for customer acquisition

June 14, 2011 | By | No Comments

Just a quick update to yesterday’s question on the value of deals sites. As I suggested, you can use deals sites as a customer acquisition tool, so long as you plan ahead on how to convert “deal shoppers” to real customers. How can you do that? Well, for one thing, pay attention to the customers who come in with your deal vouchers. Let them know that you also provide special offers to repeat customers through your own marketing and ask them to join your email list. Then market targeted offers directly to these folks, focusing in particular on the value they receive.

Make sure you define the deal site customers as a separate segment in your marketing database. Over time, you want to understand whether these deals sites provide a good source of new customers or if, as I suggested yesterday, you attract only bargain shoppers unwilling to ever trade up to full price.

You can do the same with your web traffic, too. Justin Cutroni offers a handy look at using Google Analytics custom variables for e-commerce that you should check out/forward to your analysts.

It’s clear that everyone wants to get a great deal. But it’s a losing proposition if you’re constantly lowering your prices, particularly for a group that may never buy from you otherwise. Save the bargains for your best customers as a thank you. And look at the deal site segment separately to see if they’re worth it to your business.



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Tim Peter

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June 13, 2011

The real deal on deals sites

June 13, 2011 | By | No Comments

Are you using any deals sites? If so, Forbes magazine offers Interesting data suggesting those are Groupon’s customers, not yours. In assessing the data, the author, Chunka Mui, asks:

“Are merchants in sectors where Groupon develops critical mass essentially yielding their customer relationships to Groupon?”

I’d expand that to include all the deals sites. In my experience, deal seekers rarely exhibit brand loyalty. Instead, their loyalty is solely to their bottom line. Kevin Hillstrom covered this topic some time ago, noting, “Remember… they sell access to a list.”

Their list. Not yours.

Customers join these deals sites, whether it’s Groupon, Gilt Groupe, Google, etc., solely for the advertised benefit: to find great deals. If your brand offers the best deal that day, you’re in. If not, then they’ll keep looking.

A few years ago, a brand I knew offered a a huge discount through multiple channels as a promotion. It was incredibly successful at driving sales. At least, it was in the short term. Longer term, they found that almost none of the first-time customers who bought at the discounted price came back and bought at regular prices. Really. Almost none. After that, they began offering their best deals only to their best customers, increasing repeat sales. Not only that, but the brand succeeded in getting those customers to talk about the brand with their friends, driving new customer acquisition.

Now, that’s not to suggest that the lists these deals sites sell may not have value to your business. But don’t assume deals sites make for a great customer acquisition strategy—unless you make them one.



Are you getting enough value out of your small business website? Want to make sure your business makes the most of the local, mobile, social web? thinks helps you understand how to grow your business via the web, every day. Get more than just news. Get understanding. Add thinks to your feed reader today.

Or subscribe via email.

And while you’re at it, don’t forget to follow Tim on Twitter.

Tim Peter & Associates helps companies from startups to the Fortune 500 use the web to reach more customers, more effectively every day. Take a look and see how we can help you.

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