How Does Groupon Work and Make Money?

Do you know How Does Groupon Work and Make Money?

We all get dumb struck by the powers our mothers possess when it comes to bargaining. Now imagine the collective bargaining power of all the bargainers.

Groupon did the same too and now provides the customers an amazing platform for bargaining while reaching a $1 billion valuation milestone. The marketplace for such a platform is now being recognized by various ecommerce app development companies.

What Is Groupon?

What Is Groupon?

Bringing people together to accomplish certain objectives. This was the main objective of The Point, a website centered on tipping points that Andrew Mason established in 2007.

Later, Andrew Mason proudly acquired Groupon and transformed it into what it is today- A great ecommerce marketplace.

The Point is responsible for the creation of Groupon. A website was required by Andrew Mason in order to provide huge discounts to companies and organizations. From this birthed the journey of Groupon and now has become the talk of the show.

Groupon has been the subject of discussions among business people ever since it started. Regarding whether it is real or fraudulent, there have been several claims. Is Groupon a real company? is a question that is frequently asked. That being said, now we will travel in the world of Groupon, explaining the most important question: How does Groupon work?

Groupon is a well-known e-commerce site that provides discounts and deals on a variety of items and services. Groupon collaborates with companies to develop customized coupons and promotions, which are then distributed to customers via the Groupon website and app.

When a customer buys a Groupon, they will receive a code that can be exchanged to redeem the offer with a partnered business provider.  Groupon provides a simple and effective way for businesses to attract new customers while also allowing users to save money on items they want or need.

Another advantage of using Groupon is that the company shares client information with its businesses. According to the Groupon privacy policy, the company that provides the product shares the e-mail addresses of clients who purchase a Groupon.

If you too wish to create a platform like Groupon to generate revenue, partner with a top ecommerce app development company. Further in this blog we will discuss how groupon works in a step-by-step manner. So, get your coffee mug, we’re in for a detailed read.

How Does Groupon Work? A Nutshell Explanation

How Does Groupon Work? A Nutshell Explanation

The Groupon business model is quite simple. It is designed in a way that allows customers to buy rebate coupons and arrangements for wanted products.  Then it gains revenues in the form of commissions for each consumer who references the merchant. Now further we will explain how Groupon works more briefly-

In the two-sided marketplace that underpins the Groupon business model, local customers can find bargains from local stores. Selling local and travel-related services and items generates revenue for the business.

It has a very strong value proposition that centers on bringing local customers to local businesses. Instead, local customers receive savings and discounts that they would not otherwise receive.

The rise of the company’s sales and gross billings are how it gauges its financial performance. By selling its goods and services directly through its websites along with mobile app Groupon made more than $2.8 billion in 2017. Let’s understand how does groupon work in a more detailed manner:

Groupon Business Model Detailed Walkthrough

Groupon Business Model Detailed Walkthrough

Groupon’s business concept is centered on a local e-commerce marketplace that links businesses and customers by offering discounted goods and services. Groupon partially replaces the conventional advertising that local companies have relied upon for years to boost local sales. You must’ve seen advertisements popping up on following media channels:

  • Yellow Pages
  • Newspapers
  • Mail Subscription
  • Radio
  • Television
  • Online Advertisements

The Groupon Strategy is quite simple. Groupon brings customers to providers who would otherwise go unnoticed. Customers receive savings and discounts that they would not normally receive elsewhere.

These deals are largely promoted on mobile applications and sites in various countries all across the globe

Groupon has categorized its offerings into three main parts:

Local (Service): This generates revenues primarily through Groupon associations with local and national providers.

Goods (product): direct sales sales transactions where Groupon sells customer-supplied products directly, as well as third-party sales transactions

Travel (service): Groupon provides both reduced and market-rate travel deals.

Groupon: A Two Sided Marketplace

Understanding the worth of a lead and potential customer is crucial when determining whether to spend resources on marketing or sales. Therefore, business development and sales are essential components for a company’s success if it offers premium goods that are produced for a strictly defined target market.

However, marketing will be the appropriate answer if the company offers a low-priced item that is suitable for a wide market or customer base.

The other side of the coin says it is crucial to take into account the acquisition process from two angles when it comes to the distribution process of a two-sided marketplace. For example, the two main partners for whom Groupon must generate value are:

  • Local businesses that are okay with giving discounts to eligible local clients in return for those customers’ business.
  • Local customers that are excited to do business with local merchants.

Additionally, it suggests a two-pronged distribution approach in which each of those essential stakeholders will be attracted to the platform via either sales or marketing. The value of a business that Groupon introduces is inherently greater than the value that a local customer would generate.

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As a result, Groupon will employ sales techniques and assistance to foster partnerships with local retailers. Instead, to recruit local customers, Groupon employs a marketing mix of many marketing efforts in order to make the platform interesting to its local consumers who can discover the deal they seek.

There are two ways to gain access to the platform:

  • com: their shopping website
  • Groupon App

Let’s take a closer look at Groupon’s marketing and sales efforts to attract local customers and businesses to the platform.

Marketing is the key driver of local consumer acquisition. By making deal offerings available through its marketplaces, Groupon employs a number of marketing channels with a direct to consumer business model.

How Does Groupon Work its Marketing Strategy?

The Groupon mobile app is the main source of consumer access. Over 69% of Groupon global transactions took place on mobile devices in the fourth quarter of 2017. This is where the importance of a leading mobile app development sets in.

Because of this, marketing is a crucial element of Groupon’s growth strategy as well as a key part of its distribution plan. In 2017, Groupon spent nearly $400 million, or 31% of company profits, on marketing. So the rising question here is how does Groupon work its marketing strategy?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

There is no better approach to reach local customers than through search engines for a company like Groupon that heavily depends on exposure from local consumers throughout the world. Indeed, search engines offer two major benefits:

  • Customers can be reached with specific keywords
  • Customers can be reached with local keywords also

So, for a business and platform like Groupon, SEO (search engine optimization) could result in a huge return on investment. Customers from all across the world get access to Groupon discounts through third-party search engines. The fact that SEO is organic is a benefit. In essence, customers find Groupon based on natural rankings the site has accumulated over time.

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Search Engine Marketing

Customers can reach the Groupon platform through search engine paid listings that are based on keyword bidding. For instance, Google enables bids on particular terms with particular business intent through its advertising network.

Consequently, businesses that use such search terms are likely to wind up buying Groupon offers. This is what we call search engine marketing aka SEM .

Email Marketing

Another important component of the Groupon marketing mix is direct link to customers via an email list made up of subscribers who willingly sign up, as well as push alerts (notification service to send updates on mobile devices). This approach gives Groupon greater control over which deals are shown directly to its customers and members.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is another key marketing distribution approach. In summary, affiliates that refer customers to Groupon deals via links on their websites are compensated with a commission.

Social Media Marketing

The social media driven world has become essential for every service to flaunt their products on. Display advertising on websites and social media is also used by Groupon to advertise its products.

Television and Traditional Media

Additionally, Groupon began to spend more money on traditional forms of advertising including radio, print, and television.

The main factor influencing the purchase of local businesses is sales operations.

For the company to be successful in the long run, it is essential to maintain relationships with the millions of local businesses on Groupon. These connections are crucial to long-term commercial success, in fact.

Additionally, this is why Groupon employed 2,400 merchant sales agents and sales support personnel in 2017. They were tasked with fostering business contacts with local expertise.

How Does Groupon Work to Make Money?

The majority cash flow Groupon generates by selling its bargain coupon comes from two key ways:

  • Direct Business
  • Third Party Associations

Direct Business Revenue Generation

Through its Goods category, the company directly makes money off of the inventory of goods for sale. This is also the reason why third-party revenues, which are recorded on a net basis, have a far lower cost of sales than immediate revenues.

The cost of inventory, shipping, fulfillment fees, and inventory markdowns are all included in direct revenues.

Third Party Revenue Generation

Revenue for the third-party merchant is displayed as third-party revenue and is recorded on a net basis. The cost of revenue for third-party revenue transactions includes projected refunds. The system allows such third-party companies to earn commissions when users use digital discounts on their websites and applications.

The cost of revenue for third-party revenue transactions includes projected refunds. The system allows such third-party companies to earn commissions when users use digital discounts on their websites and applications.

Key Financial Indicators of Groupon

The financial performance of any firm is assessed using a set of internal criteria that the company employs to gauge its progress. At the same time, the same indicators are provided to outside investors in order to analyze the company’s progress.

Groupon considers five main metrics to analyze its growth-

  • Income from gross billings
  • Adjusted gross profit EBITDA
  • Cash flow available


With this we have answered how does Groupon works. Businesses have a great chance to market their goods or services and get new clients thanks to Groupon. Groupon even turned down a $6 billion offer from Google in 2010. If you too wish to develop a platform like Groupon, hire dedicated developers.

Companies must be conscious of the hazards associated with discounting, though. Businesses in particular need to be sure they can handle an inflow of new clients and satisfy the Groupon deal’s requirements. Businesses should also make sure that they are offering a premium good or service at a competitive price because unhappy consumers are more likely to submit bad reviews.

In general, businesses may increase their consumer base and generate revenue by using Groupon’s business model.