Google Offers vs. Groupon: It’s Deal Time!

by Gaurav Kheterpal on January 21, 2011

If you can’t beat them, buy them. If you can’t buy them, clone them. Google made a $6 billion offer for Groupon last year, only for the latter to say “No Thanks!” Despite an impressive acquisition history, the Groupon fallout was a major setback for the search giant’s aspirations to make the most of the ongoing deal app mania.

Mashable reports that Google’s had enough of Groupon and decided to build a similar product “Google Offers” on its own. LivingSocial sold over 1.3 million discounted gift cards in less than 24 hours in yesterday’s online coupon deal. Groupon already ranks as one of the most popular apps on all leading app stores and makes $800 Million in annual revenue.

There is no doubt that deals and discount apps are the current flavor of the month in the mobile world and the “Big Daddy of Internet” is in no mood to be left behind.

Though Google declined to comment on these rumors, the following definition of “Google Offers” is an obvious confirmation that a Groupon clone is on the way.

“Google Offers is a new product to help potential customers and clientele find great deals in their area through a daily email.

Haven’t we heard the “receive a daily email about an offer” trick before? Groupon does it, LivingSocial does it and the several hundred Group-on clones on Apple App Store and Android Market work the same way. ShalomLife raises an interesting point that Google never eyed the Groupon technology and its primary interest was the data which the coupon giant collected since the launch. And on other company knows the value of such sensitive data better than yours truly, Google.

With a plethora of advertising tools under its belt, it would be unsurprising if Google decided to integrate Google Offers with AdWords to offer discounted rates for advertisement. While there are speculations that Google Offers would end up being a Groupon clone, I won’t be surprised if the online search giant plays the “It’s different” trump card and looking for ways to offer added value as compared to the thousands of existing as-good-as-it-gets deal applications. Google did not indicate when it expected to launch or how “Google Offers” would function for businesses as well as customers.

The daily deals market is already overcrowded, and Google’s entry would worsen the situation. Whether Google Offers will kill Groupon or vice-versa, I do not know and quiet frankly, I do not care. Getting a good deal is all that matters at the end of the day.

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Written by: Gaurav Kheterpal. >. Follow > by: RSS>, Twitter >, >, or Friendfeed >

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