Beyond Daily Deals

I was invited to be part of a panel at the Daily Deal Summit being held in New york City this week. The panel will be discussing international trends in the deals space. I am looking forward to both the panel discussion and the event as a whole and meeting up with colleagues from across North America.

In terms of discussions coming out of this event, well, I anticipate the following: (in no particular order)

1. Mergers and acquisitions…lots of them! We are seeing  more activity than ever in this area. Who wants to buy? Investment groups wanting to “roll up” deal sites into a larger entity. Media companies looking for deal operations, inventory or aggregation. Larger Deal sites looking to increase their subscriber base. We will be meeting with and have already met with several groups concerning the acquisition of deal sites in Canada. Stay tuned, this is good for the industry, good for merchants and certainly good for consumers.

2. I am NOT a Daily Deal site! What starting out as a niche industry in the consumer deals space and merchant advertising space, is quickly becoming and morphing into ecommerce sites and portals. Meaning, in a year or so from now the market will see a lot more deal sites having matured into ecommerce portals. In order to keep growing certain deal sites are becoming less about local deals of the day and more about Deals all the time. Deals on local, deals on products, deals on travel, deals by category, deals on deals :). Where overstock.com meets the daily deal industry. Some deal sites are actually moving away from being known as a “Daily Deal” site on purpose. For them, it makes more sense to be something more.

3. Deal technology shines. For an industry that is all web and that is only 2-3 years old, it has certainly used archaic methods of operations. (physical redemption of vouchers for instance). Going forward, there are and will continue to be those in the development community that launch products that help deal companies perform better. Improved email deliver ability, improved loyalty tracking for merchants and consumers, improved deal distribution and redemption, mobile technologies, analytics, white label deals platforms, better deals aggregation, improved deal ad distribution and management, and better APIs and integration among popular services among others. All this leading to a better experience for the consumer and a less expensive business model for the industry.

4. Deals for loyalty. Credit Card companies, Banks, Loyalty programs to the fortune 500, deal distribution companies…they are all looking at how best to utilize “deals” to motive and reward their customers.

5. Deals are advertising content. Deals are the new banner ads. Offering a “live, time limited deal” on a banner ad may be more effective and create more conversions than a simple static banner describing what a company does. More companies are realizing this and trying to figure out how best to include “daily deals” in their advertising and customer acquisition plan.

6. Deals Inventory is precious. But so is having a customer database/audience. There are those who find deals and those who sell deals. The two are becoming more separate in this industry as the months go by. Media companies have no real interest in being responsible for obtaining the deals inventory…it is way too expensive. However, they absolutely have an interest in selling deal inventory to their audience. An audience they already have and own.  As we continue the march of this industry, we will see more specific channels of distribution emerge. There will be those companies that focus on hiring sales reps and approaching merchants and they will provide those merchant deals to Deal sites that are only focused on selling to consumers. Both entities need each other, it is happening already and will continue to expand over the year.

If you see other interesting trends occurring in this industry, please let us know through the comments section.