Groupon and other deal sites have become increasingly popular. From concert tickets, dinner vouchers, vacations, or massages, there’s something for everyone. The discounted prices have people flocking to these sites for the best deals and quite honestly, buying things they probably wouldn’t have thought to buy prior to seeing the large discount. At first glance, Groupon sounds like a fantastic idea: it offers the ability to market your services to hundreds of thousands of eager shoppers and attract new clients. But that is not the case when it comes to the aesthetic industry. There are many disadvantages of Groupon.
You may initially think that by using Groupon, you can attract these new clients that you can turn into loyal, returning patients. But that is rarely the case. Most people that are using deal sites are continually searching for the best and greatest deal. Once they use your service, they will most likely go back to Groupon to search for the next best deal. They have nothing to lose, they have no brand loyalty, they shop for the price, not quality. These typically tend to be the same of patients that may expect more from a treatment, so you’ll have to manage expectations with them to ensure they know what to expect from a certain treatment.
Deal sites are rarely a means of making a profit. So if you think it’s a great way to bring in more revenue, you should probably find an alternative. Deal sites typically take up to 50% commission on the final sale price. Many practices report losing money every time someone purchases and claims the deal.
Furthermore, once you promote yourself as a “discount” practice, it may be very difficult to raise prices in the future. Once you position yourself as a discounted practice, it may be difficult to repair your reputation and move into the “luxury” type of practice. So, your reputation is at stake.
These deal sites are not only detrimental to the injectors and their practice, but there are many disadvantages to the consumer as well. Consumers are putting themselves at risk when they choose price over quality. There are risks involved in aesthetic procedures, and you could be putting your self, or quite literally your face, in the hands of an untrained or unqualified professional. The consumer could have poor treatment results, which of course is the worst case scenario, but more and more possible in these scenarios. This further damages the reputation of the aesthetic industry as it could deter people from ever trying an aesthetic procedure again.
Overall, the use of deal sites is detrimental to both practitioners, their patients, and the overall industry. We would recommend staying far away from them in order to protect yourself, your practice, and your patients. You are better off using other marketing tactics, staying true to your brand, and attracting a loyal customer base.