Groupon did it. Living Social did it. Now Facebook and Google are doing it. You guessed it! Daily deals.
After launching Google Offers beta in Portland last month, the company recently announced the project’s expansion into New York and San Francisco.
By signing up at Google Offers or by accessing deals on the new “Today’s Offers” tab in Google Shopper 2.0 for Android mobile phones, consumers will receive emails with local deals from their city of choice.
Some of the standout offers come from New York City-based Beglian french fry spot Pommes Frites, vintage shops, and San Francisco’s Bob’s Donut & Pastry Shop.
Google Shopper gives consumers mobile access to deals even if they have not signed up for the program in any particular city.
Since the project is still officially in beta, the “Nearby Offers” feature on Google Shopper 2.0 only extends to Portland, New York, and San Francisco.
Mobile daily deals based on location seem to be the future of group buying as more consumers use their mobile phones to shop and interact with the world around them.
Unfortunately, Google Offer’s mobile and location-based features for Shopper are only available on Android devices, excluding iPhone and other smartphone users.
When Google kicked off its daily deal initiative in Portland last month, both Living Social and Groupon followed suit by launching daily deal initiatives on mobile.
Google plans to launch Offers in Austin, Boston, Denver, Seattle, and Washington D.C.in the coming months.
Although Groupon and Living Social are already well-established group buying sites, the sheer size and power of Google is likely to give these sites a run for their money. Perhaps the group buying site that offers the simplest and most effective UI with the best deals will emerge as the industry leader.