Living social resolve decline : Social Development

Living social resolve decline

What really happens...What really happens...PORTLAND, OR - For Immediate Release - First, a warm welcome to the 450 customers who bought our LivingSocial coupon. We've had a lot of fun meeting new customers, and helping them put together great recipes or find fun gifts (beer socks, anyone?). Portland is a super place to live for DIY food and beverage geeks and we really enjoy serving the community.

I'd like to say a couple things about LivingSocial. Like Groupon, LivingSocial promotes steeply-discounted daily deals at local businesses. It is a great deal for customers, as they get to spend $20 in our store but it only costs them $10. We did have some problems with LivingSocial, however. Read on for our full report...

LivingSocial May Leave Business Owners Unhappy

If you are a business owner thinking about doing a deal on LivingSocial (or Groupon), the key to success is to know what you are getting into. In our case, we could afford to lose money on each LivingSocial customer, in exchange for getting one new person in our store. We did the math and figured it would be worthwhile, assuming there is a limit of one voucher per person, period.What Happened to one per person?: Click to enlarge. We agreed on a contract that stipulated "limit one per person".

What ended up happening, is LivingSocial let people buy as many vouchers as they wanted to, whether they were gifts or not. We ended up selling over 640 vouchers, but to only 440 people. Some of these have turned out to be gifts, but a majority were people stocking up on an awesome deal.

Because LivingSocial did not enforce the one-per-person rule, we ended up paying a lot more, for fewer actual customers.

LivingSocial does not enforce their contract

The problem here is that our contract with living social says this "Limit 1 per person, additional as gifts.", and living social interprets this as "buy as many as you want for yourself, or gift multiple vouchers to one person". This is good for their sales, they take a major percentage of the deal, but it is bad for the business as they lose money multiple times for a single customer. The two images here show, on LivingSocial's own reports, multiple vouchers purchased by one person, and also multiple gifts going to one person. Both of these issues were very common.

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