With so many daily deals sites popping up in the past year (following the mad success of Groupon), it’s natural that consumers would want a way to sift through, aggregate, and personalize these e-coupons to fit their needs. Enter Yipit, which launched in 2010 and draws on over 400 local deals sites (including Groupon, LivingSocial, and Scoop St.) to deliver customized lists of nearby deals.
Street Fight caught up with the company’s co-founder, Jim Moran, for a quick Q&A about Yipit’s mission in the hyperlocal space, and whether the daily deals craze might be a “bubble.”
What does “hyperlocal” mean to you?
“Local” services help you in the real world. “Hyperlocal” helps you in your neighborhood, and, ideally, on your block. Within the context of “deals,” hyperlocal is extremely important. An offer for a bar across town isn’t that compelling. An offer for a bar around the corner from your office is great. Local merchants also benefit as deals go hyperlocal — people who live and work nearby are more likely to come back again and again.
Who do you think is “winning” hyperlocal right now?
In the context of “deals,” no one is winning hyperlocal right now. Foursquare, Google, Groupon, LivingSocial, Yelp and, ahem, Yipit are all positioned for various aspects of the market. However, hyperlocal offers aren’t yet changing consumer behavior. They will, soon, as the number and quality of local offers increase.
What is your sense of what local businesses want from hyperlocal?
Local businesses want new, repeat customers. I wrote a longer piece on it here. Hyperlocal offers are a great way to earn loyal customers – enticing a nearby customer to try your business is a big opportunity.
What is a reasonable cost structure around cost-per-user?
Varies widely by the margin of the business and the risk level. Daily deals allow merchants to pay on success, so their commission structure is higher. Advertising mediums charge by click or impression, and generally have a lower cost (but lower measurability).
What is Yipit’s most important hyperlocal strategy for 2011?
By the time this runs, you’ll be able to tell Yipit where you live and work and Yipit will incorporate that information into which offers we run. We are pumped about this feature. There’s lots more to come to extend the hyperlocal experience.
What separates Yipit from all the other daily deals sites out there? Is there a “bubble” in this space?
Yipit is different because we actually aggregate the 400-plus daily deal sites in the U.S., and recommend offers based on where you are and what you like. We’re a one stop shop for the daily deal space.