SMBs

Sites where small businesses can sell their wares

Good bargains are hard to come by, and for small businesses, having an online platform that allows them to sell their products can mean the difference between success and failure.

Who doesn't like a good deal? I know I do. Daily deal services like LivingSocial and Groupon are helping thousands of small businesses get new and targeted visitors. A recent study found that 43 percent of consumers would be willing to purchase a daily deal offered by a local business they are familiar with. The same study showed that 42 percent of those who purchased a daily deal would get attached to a business.  What's more, familiarity with a product would influence a daily deal purchase with six out of ten respondents saying they would purchase the deal if it was for a product they already liked to use.

What does all this mean for your small business? Whether you own a restaurant, a spa or run a retail store, daily deal sites offer potential for attracting new buying customers. Let's look at some daily deal sites that can help drive those online daily deal seekers to your establishment.

LivingSocial

One of the most successful daily deals of 2011 on LivingSocial was $10 for a $20 gift card that allowed people to make any purchase on Amazon.com. The item generated over $11 million in one day when 1.1 million people signed up. By selling a discount, rather than a discounted product, the deal, all things being equal, became relevant to everyone at large. In addition, the whole "gift" idea tended to allow consumers to have a greater willingness and urgency to make a purchase.

Whether you are run a restaurant, a spa, travel or more, LivingSocial offers tools and new ways of offering discounts. You can then share your discounts either on Facebook, Twitter or via email using LivingSocial's advanced platform.

Groupon

CanvasPop a company that ran a Groupon, transforms photos onto canvas. As an online service, CanvasPop was able to capture emails when people signed up to redeem the Groupon on their site. A 15-percent off gift certificate was also offered that could be shared with friends on each order. The lesson? In order to be successful on Groupon, you need to create a positive experience with your new customers if you are to convert them to repeat customers where you will get the most benefit from the initial deal offer. You also need to gather information about the customers, such as email addresses, for tracking as well as for future marketing efforts.

Woot!

This is a special kind of inventory clearance that offers tons of discounted merchandise, usually a single item per day. One day it might be iPhones selling while another day might be iPads. When one item sells off, the next item comes up for sale. This deal strategy yields all sorts of unpredictable sales patterns. At one time, items can sell off in a flash while others may linger for hours. This is a great tool to offset your inventory and get things moving off the shelf.

1 Sale A Day

Much like Woot!, 1 Sale A Day posts a product a day that includes a product description, features and a "Buy Now" button on the homepage. A countdown timer marks the end of the deal at midnight after which a new product comes up.

What other small business deals sites have you used and that you feel are worth mentioning? Share below.

About

David Gitonga is an avid reader and writer and has worked with various companies to design, develop, and maintain their websites. He has worked with websites as an online content marketing strategist in the field of tech, social media, design, and de...

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