Groupon Continues the Battle for E-Commerce Dominance With Redesign

GrouponA while ago, I wrote on this blog about Groupon laying the groundwork for its goals for expansion. Now, Groupon has continued on this path with a major overhaul to both its website and mobile apps. This complete redesign serves two goals: added functionality and a more sophisticated look that reflects the future of Groupon as a company. While added local search features will be a boost for small businesses that promote on Groupon, will these new updates really benefit you?

The Redesign

Groupon’s website has not seen a major update since the company’s launch 5 years ago, and this redesign certainly makes up for lost time. Both the website and mobile apps have been given a complete facelift, with new code and a new background color – white instead of green. On the homepage, Groupon users are now greeted by a spotlighted deal as well a set of more suggested deals chosen based on their interests and past purchases. The website also has a navigation menu on the left side that sorts deals by category as well as a search tool at the top of the page that will search across categories rather than just within one category, a long awaited update.

On mobile, Groupon is enhancing local deal discovery through geofencing. They have implemented a new feature called “Local Explorer” that detects changes in location to show users local deals and allows them to opt into a push notification system that provides deals upon entering a new area. Users will also be allowed to favorite deals on the Groupon mobile app, and the search bar is also prominently located at the top of the screen.

Groupon’s Goal

Overall, Groupon’s redesign aligns with the company’s goal of expanding as the top global e-commerce platform. With this overhaul, Groupon also expanded into 12 new international markets. In addition, analysts note that the redesign was likely intended to attract wealthier customers with its more sophisticated look and feel. Executives at Groupon believe that they still have significant ground to cover in terms of expansion to dominate the realm of e-commerce.

How This Affects You

With the new Local Explorer feature designed to help Groupon users find more local deals, the small businesses that promote their products and services on Groupon will certainly benefit. However, analysts note that Groupon has been struggling to attract long-term merchant partners, potentially due to the fact that they do not share enough of their profits with merchants. In addition, we at CEM are hearing from our clients that companies that offer thousands of products in small niche markets are seeing their SERPs dominated by larger e-commerce stores such as Groupon, despite the fact that they offer much fewer products. While the Groupon updates may benefit some small businesses, it is clear that many others are being left in the dust.
Does your small business promote on Groupon? Why or why not?

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Elizabeth K

Elizabeth Kent is a recent graduate with an M.A. in Women’s and Gender Studies from Brandeis University. She earned her B.A. from Smith College with a major in the Study of Women and Gender and a minor in Jewish Studies. Elizabeth recently relocated from the Boston area back to Western Massachusetts, where she spends her free time volunteering with a local non-profit organization. Elizabeth has worked as a writing tutor, archival intern, research assistant, and retail associate. Her interests include studying pop culture, kittens, and making meals with as little cooking as possible.

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