Don’t discount unnecessarily
Don’t discount unnecessarily what people are willing to pay full price for. I recently visited a local small chain restaurant Tilted Kilt who had an insane Yelp check-in special. They used a Groupon type model of “get $20 of food for $12”. So what’s the problem? Don’t leave money on the table with a captive audience.
TIP: Yelp check-in offers are free, just be sure to use them correctly. These should be used to increase your check average. Remember customers who use these are already in your place, don’t think of these as a call to action.
UPDATE: This Tilted Kilt location is now closed. (not sure if this mis-management is to blame)
While we’re on the subject of Groupon or Yelp, I’m not a huge fan of using either. Let me be clear here. All of the FREE aspects of Yelp I love. Responding to reviews and instant messages is one of the most important things you can do to grow new business. But to PAY Yelp for placement or certain features is insane. I’ve done the research and I’ve found ZERO ROI for using these paid features, especially the “Sponsored” listing preference at the top of the list. People subconsciously gloss right over these and go right to the “organic” listings. Myself included. Read more about correct ways to respond to online reviews here.
Groupon has cornered the market on the cheap-ass customer who is a one-and-done type of visitor. I know because not only have I done the research but I have several friends who use Groupon like this. They want a certain service or want to visit a certain restaurant. Their first move is to go to Groupon to see if there is an offer. If there is one they’ll absolutely use it. These are full paying customers but end up paying about half price because if the Groupon offer. In my experience these people will visit that restaurant anyway regardless of the Groupon offer.