How To Use Groupon To Grow Your Beauty Business

And What To Watch Out For

Picture it—a place where you can market your services to an audience who’s already set on purchasing a service. A place that puts you, your salon, and your services in front of a crowd that’s starved for beauty services and is ready to click that buy button ASAP. A place where you don’t have to talk someone into giving your salon or shop a try.

Guess what, gang—that places it exists. And it’s called Groupon.

Okay, okay, maybe we’re overselling this a little. Groupon isn’t the salon-shop-and-spa Valhalla we’re pretending it is, but it is a dang good advertising and marketing platform that can help you draw in new clients by the bundle.

Why? Because Groupon is, at its simplest, a hoppin’ marketplace platform that consumers check when they’re already in the ready to buy stage.

Sure, Groupon has it’s pros and cons, but at the end of the day, if you use Groupon correctly, you can trade a little bit of money for a lot of new clients (that you can keep and convert to regulars).

 Wanna know more? We thought you might. Keep on reading!

What Exactly is Groupon?

If you’ve never heard of Groupon, we’re only going to tease you about your couponing skills just a little bit.

Groupon is a huge advertising platform that’s designed to target local markets. Basically, businesses can use Groupon to promote coupons, discounts, vouchers, and more for services or products that a local audience can purchase.

Let’s reframe this a bit. Think of Groupon as a glorified middleman.

They’ve got the audience, so they’re using their platform (which thousands upon thousands of people check) to serve up your deals, discounts, and more.

The catch? Groupon isn’t free to use—you’ve got to pay them for their middleman services. Whether you believe that the connection to a larger, ready-to-spend-money target audience is worth it is totally up to you.

You might love it because you’re able to attract clients, boost your demand, and potentially get the influx of new clients you’ve been dying to get. Groupon loves it because the more people that buy from you, the more money they make.

It’s a bit of a give-and-take set-up, but the overall design is that you pay Groupon to get your name (and your deals!) on their buzzing marketplace with the hopes of drawing in a ton of new clients to your small business.

How Groupon Works (& How It Can Benefit You)

We’re going to skip being cute and go straight into the How Groupon Works thing (because that’s exactly what you’re here for and we’re not about to play games with fierce stylists like you).

The Groupon process is pretty straightforward.

You create a discount, deal, or voucher setup that you want listed on Groupon. Heck, you can even work with certain Groupon plans to get them to feature your deal in their email campaigns to specific local markets (AKA yours).

Consumers will spot your deal on the Groupon site and purchase your deal on the Groupon site. They collect the money for you, they take a cut off the top, and then the rest is yours!

Groupon can be beneficial for a lot of reasons. Not only are you gaining access to a marketplace full of consumers who are already in the “time-to-purchase” phase (because people perusing Groupon are typically already set on purchasing something), but you’re also marketing yourself in a way that doesn’t rely wholly on Google’s ever-changing algorithms or other SEO specificities.

Groupon’s formula works by showing users everything on the site within a specific set of search terms and parameters.

That means that if your business fits someone’s search terms or specifications, it’s going to show up no matter what.

Groupon: The Good & The Bad

Let’s Talk Groupon Pros

Easy and Direct Access to Ready-to-Buy Consumers

This is one of the most valuable aspects of Groupon. Even if you’re great at your craft, have happy clients, great reviews, etc., that doesn’t mean you have access to a market that’s full of consumers who are ready to purchase your services.

Groupon is essentially a marketplace for people who are—more often than not—ready to buy. Groupon isn’t like Google or Bing or other search engines because it’s an intentional space where consumers go when they’re already sure they’re going to make a purchase.

Access to that kind of crowd usually doesn’t come around without some sort of middleman assistance.

Simple Advertisement For Your Business

The cool thing about Groupon is that it works two-fold. Not only are you offering a discount to draw in new clients, you’re also paying for your name to show up on a site that gets a ton of daily traffic.

Whether someone decides to purchase your Groupon or not, if they’re looking within the same parameters as your deal, they’ll see your name—and sometimes, just seeing your name is enough to convert a client later.

Helps Build Relationships Without a Ton of Effort (or Resources)

With Groupon, you create the chance to build relationships with clients.

Groupon can bring in a huge influx of clients in the door, and by building up those relationships, you can likely convert a solid proportion of those newbies into regulars.

Of Course, Groupon Cons Exist, Too

it can cost you big time

At the end of the day, to get on Groupon, you need to offer your services for a substantial discount, and on top of that, Groupon is going to take a chunk of the money of the top (about 50 percent). 

If you’re not really taking the time to math out your services, your time, and how these discounts affect your profit margins, you could end up losing a lot of money.

discounts and deals might not attract the clients you’re looking for

With any kind of discount or deal, you run the risk of attracting clients that aren’t necessarily your target audience. People love deals—we don’t blame them—but often, if it’s just the deal attracting a consumer to your salon or shop, they might be in it for all the wrong reasons. 

If you have a target audience you’re trying to reach or a certain clientele that you know is profitable for your business, you can’t always rely on your Groupon to attract that specific audience.

the payoff might not be worth it

The reality of discounts and deals is that even though they can bring an influx of customers in the door, they’re not a foolproof method to turn those newbies into repeat customers. 

Further, there’s no guarantee that your deal is going to be profitable in the long-term, and with Groupon keeping a pretty good chunk of the cash (about 50 percent of the revenue from each deal), there’s no guarantee the short-term reward is worth it, either.

The biggest problem here? It’s a gamble.

How to Make Groupon Work For Your Salon, Shop, or Spa

Here’s the deal with Groupon—it’s not for everybody. There are obvious pros and cons for using this as a form of advertisement, so ultimately deciding on using it is totally up to you.

We will say, if you do plan to use Groupon, there are a few restrictions and limits you should think about adding in for your deal to make it work best for you!

  • Offer these types of Groupon discounts to new customers only.
  • Make sure you create an expiration date from the purchase time to the service—that way, you can plan for an influx of customers at a specific time.
  • Limit the number of Groupon coupons that are available, that way you can have a rough estimate of what to expect and what to plan for (because an influx of new customers is great until you’re not prepared enough to help them all).
  • Add a reservation caveat for the Groupon deal (the more planning you’re able to implement, the better).
  • Limit the Groupon coupon to 1 per visit and 1 per person—unless, of course, you want to let someone purchase an additional coupon as a gift.  

Love it or hate it, people flock to a good deal. If you’re looking to draw in new clients, Groupon might be the right advertising and marketing strategy for you! 

We hope our Groupon article gave you some sweet tips for salon success for Groupon. 

Planning to use Groupon? Have you used Groupon before? 

Have some hot Groupon tips we didn’t share on this post? Tell us all about in the comment section—that’s what it’s there for!

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