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Maybe this is a sign of the times, but you know when something has gone mainstream when there’s a WordPress plugin to do it.

The world’s favourite (and free) CMS (content management system) has Groupon’d itself up with a plugin that allows you to run group-buy flash sales and daily deals on any wordpress powered site or blog.  All you need is a PayPal account to collect the cash.

So if you fancy yourself as the next Andrew Mason – CEO of Groupon, the fastest growing web business ever (wordpress blog to $800m+ revenue in 18 months), then check out GroupBuyingSite.com for a new Group Buy wordpress plugin that could turn your site or blog into the next Groupon.

Or not.  Of course, Groupon is powered not just by a great idea and great deals, but by hefty investment, a not-so-small small army of deal negotiators and big advertising budgets.  But whilst dreams of becoming Andrew Mason 2.0 will stay just that – dreams – the democratisation of Group Buy technology is nevertheless an opportunity for brand sites, bloggers and small businesses alike – particularly in specialised verticals.  Run a special interest business, brand site, web service, blog or e-zine?  It could be worth shelling out the $200 for the premium plugin (nb. the plugin was developed independently, not by Groupon) to boost revenue or monetize your site.  The B2B space, in particular, and in our opinion, is ripe to get Groupon’d. For instance, why isn’t there a Group Buy site for local deals on office supplies? With the famous five minute install of WordPress + activating the Group Buy Plugin, it could be you.

A word of caution though, it’s not about the technology, nor the Group Buy concept, it’s about the deals.  To be successful, you’ll need an ‘in’ with retailers or service providers in your area – to negotiate unique and compelling deals worth talking about.  You’ll also need to a user base to whom you can promote the deals – Mason and co. have deep pockets and can afford to buy users.  If you don’t have a few million to spare – building an email list from scratch will be prohibitively expensive.  And it’s worth noting we haven’t seen any real life examples of the new GroupBuyingSite’s Group Buy plugin in action yet (there is a demo in the site though); perhaps it’ll be worth waiting for the first showcase examples, and contacting theowners for testimonials and feedback.  We’ve contacted the developers for a review copy, which we’ll review for you.

Finally, we’d strongly recommend listening to the experience of others experimenting with Group Buy before starting out.  In particular, Peter Alik over at the wine industry’s digital think tank, Vintank who recently ran a Group Buy social commerce experiment and has candidly shared insights and lessons from the experience – is worth listening to. Remember the LEAD strategy for social commerce begins with L – Listen (Experiment, Apply, Develop) – listening to your users, and to social commerce experience in your category.

Of course, there are plenty of Groupon Clone site scripts out in the wild for inspiration and purchase for a few hundred dollars (explaining the myriad of Groupon clones – Microsoft is even getting in on the game), and then there are Group Buy aggregator scripts available if you want to run a specialised Deal Radar or Yipit deal notification service for a particular product category.  And that’s before we consider Facebook applications that let you run Group Buy deals in Facebook.  But what potentially sets the new Group Buy WordPress plugin aside is precisely that it’s a WordPress plugin, a huge user base combined with ease of installation could trigger a wave of new group buy sites.  Plug and Pay.  Group Buy without tears.  And because it’s WordPress, users will not be tied to the original developers for support – although they offer it – the plugin will speak the language of one of the largest developer communities out there.

At the very least – the new Group Buy WordPress plugin should be good for innovation – further democratising the technology in a way that will allow the best ideas, not the deepest pockets, to flourish.  And more importantly for your business in 2011, the plugin could be your long-shot low-cost bet on profiting from the most successful business model of 2010.

  • Reply
    Author
    Alvin Tan

    The phenomenal success of Groupon not only results in direct copycats but also inspires the creation of variations, such as GroupBuyingSite.com, Walmart’s CrowdSaver, Sears’ WishTogether, etc. In fact, here at Zuupy, we have also come up with our own variation that is somewhat a cross of GroupBuyingSite.com and CrowdSaver.

  • Reply
    Author
    Tweets that mention New Group Buy Wordpress Plugin: Opportunity for Brands, Businesses & Bloggers? | Social Commerce Today — Topsy.com

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Nicolas Leroy, Yago Veith. Yago Veith said: E-Commerce: Group Buy WordPress Plugin: Opportunity for Brands, Businesses & Bloggers? http://ow.ly/3o8Me […]

  • Reply
    Author
    Ron Zeligzon

    I was thinking about this in relation to Groupon last week and finally someone else did it. This is exactly what Groupon needs to do along with what they are still doing. Get deals on sites that are more specific to the actual deal as opposed to a general deal for a specific location like what Groupon does.

  • Reply
    Author
    Free “Groupon” Plugin for Business & Brand Blogs | Social Commerce Today

    […] Posted on December 22, 2010 by Paul Marsden Posted in Latest, Market News TweetOn the heels of last week’s launch of the premium Group Buy plugin for WordPress blogs from GroupBuyingSite.com, GetShopped has launched a similar but free (for now) […]

  • Reply
    Author
    Andrei

    I saw that website, the idea is very nice, and is very trendy, so it will catch up very fast. I am the owner of http://sitemile.com and i can tell you we are working and we will release very soon a group buy theme and plugin but at a lower price than their offer and with even better functionality.

  • Reply
    Author
    Murray Hancock

    Did you get software to review? I am not getting much independent joy before deciding whether or not to purchase and have seen a few adverse comments, though keen to buy in principle.

  • Reply
    Author
    Ngu Nyindem

    How could you guys vouch for a product whose website has no contact information? I am very skeptical about these guys and unless I can reach someone on the phone or even see an address, I will folks to stay away.

  • Reply
    Author
    Andrei Saioc

    yes thats right, no demo. Here will be places the new wordpress group buy theme from sitemile: http://sitemile.com/products

  • Reply
    Author
    Kevin

    Hi interested to know if you’ve heard back from these guys yet? Seems slow to reply

  • Reply
    Author
    groupon clone scripts

    Hi, I am new here. I like your post very much. Thanks for your great posting.

  • Reply
    Author
    Leon

    I’ve got no reply for weeks now from Groupbuyingsite.com. Put off big time.

  • Reply
    Author
    Carl

    Thinking about purchasing the theme from groupbuyingsite.come but these comments have deterred me. Has anyone got any good news about them yet?

  • Reply
    Author
    Joe Manariti

    Well, let me tell you – 3 months of poor support and frustration. New API’s given exactly the same as the last, support techs that don’t read the case history and a store that simply doesn’t work.
    Do not purchase.
    I think these guys meant well, but don’t have a clue.
    It all equates to a scam.

  • Reply
    Author
    Rick

    Well I have had exactly the opposite experience that is mentioned above. Every response both pre and post sales has been within minutes to an hour. And there have been over 40 questions to date.

    Not only that … as a buyer of their software for our site http://www.wineyoga.com.au, I am entitled to be part of a huge community of site owners in a forum where people are helpful and supportive of others entering into this space.

    I have been involved with other Content Management Systems like Concrete 5 that I am very comfortable with so my venture into a wordpress addon for a groupbuy site was a VERY nervous experience. I am delightfully surprised and quite frankly blown away.

    I came to this site and a few others that were critical of these guys and very nearly did not make the decision to go with them. I can only say that it is impossible that what others say above is coming from people that have actually bought the product and become part of this community of like minded folk who want to launch a daily deals site. It is absolutely impossible that if they had, that they would be making the negative comments above. I can only think that it is from competitors that would prefer to play dirty.

    I spent 3 weeks doing demos, trials, emails, forum, visiting review sites, trying to phone people in India (OMG) and I am so grateful that I made the decision to go with the http://groupbuyingsite.com application. It is by far the most mature technology in terms of functionality and to date, support and forum input is fantastic compared to ANY other I have been trialing.

    My only criticism is that they do not defend nor market themselves well enough.

    And as I write this I can just smell people coming on to challenge what I am writing accusing me of being a groupbuysite.com employee given the extreme praise I have for these guys. Well I AM NOT and once our site launches in the next couple of weeks … contact me directly and I am happy to have a chat as I would have loved to have had someone willing to chat with me prior to my decision. We are in Australia launching a daily deals wine site and the groupbuysite.com team are in the US. NO AFFILIATION … just a sincere passion to help out a great company that wants a fair go without competitors coming on here pretending to be X customers of theirs.

    Cheers

    Rick

  • Reply
    Author
    Dan Cameron

    Hello Joe,

    This is Dan from the forums, the support technician that helped you and the lead GBS developer. I think it’s important for everyone to know the details about your situation since we tried our best to help you.

    We spent hours working on your issue despite it being an problem with your host (not GBS). We went above and beyond the normal support scope for self-hosted software. We requested access to your server and in doing so we quickly located the problem.

    The issue was attributed to the server (or IP) your hosting company provisioned for your site. Since the IP address made hacking attempts on (mt) servers it was blacklisted as the support history from (mt) clearly indicates: http://s-v.me/Ay00

    Despite your issue not being related to GBS, we still provided you with recommendations to resolve the issue. Those recommendations included asking your hosting company to address the situation or moving your site to another host. This is the first time I’ve heard from you since I gave you those recommendations.

    Sorry to hear your host didn’t help you with the migration. Regardless, the fact that your past client is now using GBS off your server, without any problems whatsoever, speaks volumes to our product and support.

  • Reply
    Author
    wordpress plugin

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  • Reply
    Author
    Hyip Reviews

    My brother recommended I would possibly like this web site. He used to be totally right. This put up truly made my day. You cann’t imagine simply how a lot time I had spent for this information! Thanks!

  • Reply
    Author
    Rick

    Please ignore everything I had posted above about this wordpress addon.

    I got so close but yet so far away with these guys. They started off with great support and the addon seemed to be mature enough to take our business to market. Everything changed after I posted the above praise for them. Their service and responsiveness dropped off. Their product ended up missing fundamental features that any online store needs such as automated customer receipts once the deal is done.

    It got so Bad that because I was complaining on their support Forum (which they started removing my posts saying they they were offensive or something) they shut off complete access to support. We were already well past our launch date so we abandoned this addon and thank god, went for a very mature Magento Daily Deals addon called Groupon Clone (in Magento). Great Support and got us launched within a week.

  • Reply
    Author
    kris

    A group buying website usually will cost $2000-$4000 to make it run properly.

    So when people see these clones, such as NDOT, for $100-300 people get very excited and forget the primary rule in business, you get what you pay for. These cheap scripts can function at a basic level, they are not scams, but they aren’t high quality and there not going to convince customers to buy from you instead of groupon.

    One of the reasons i failed alot in the start of my business career is because i ignored this common sence rule too alot. IF you wonder why you keep failing then ask yourself are you really putting everything you have into it.

    If your going to do ANY business, GO ALL IN, put as much as you can into the business. IF you cant do that, then dont do it all and save your money. Dont do half hearted attempts, they are a waste of your money.

    Something that you could try is buy one of these scripts, start the daily deal site, but from the very beginning have a indian freelancer programmer of web developer working on your website every week to improve functionality and response to customer complaints regarding bad comments on the sites usability. E.g. if a customer says the buttons are tiny, boom, get your developer to fix it right away.

    Good luck.

    • Reply
      Author
      Rick

      I completely agree KRIS … we spent 4k all up to date and leverage Adolmedia low cost Indian developers to modify and enhance the product.

      The biggest cost is our time and the advertising costs to be found.

  • Reply
    Author
    Für Marcel: Jeder kann seine eigene DeinDeal/Groupon Plattform aufbauen – Er braucht nur WordPress und das entsprechende Plugin | Upgrade zum Geschäftsmann 2.0
  • Reply
    Author
    Jo

    We bought this theme and were very happy with it. All was going well, a week from launch, client was happy…….suddenly API stops working.

    We go to the site and our account is shut down, no access to forum or help desk. I figure no problem just contact them.

    But if you don’t have an account with them there is no way to contact them except contact form. No number, no indication of who they are. We tried every possible method no response. It has been over a week now.

    Up until this point we had never tried to reach them I didn’t even need there help during the process once so we never used any kind of support. Everything was paid for there is no reason this should have happened. We were days away from launching and are now completely being held hostage.

    the fine print says that you don’t have to maintain a membership, only if you want access to forums and updates. So why would our API stop working if our account was cancelled. Product was paid for, this should not happen.

    I have been in the WP community since day 1. We develop themes and plugins too and understand how much work it is to support it and I understand mistakes happen and you can get burned out. There is no excuse for this though. If you can’t respond within a few days to a critical customer issue, then you need to hire more help to support your product or sell it to someone who is fresh and wants to take over supporting it.

    • Reply
      Author
      Jo

      Eventually or issues were addressed but it was not easy. It is difficult to contact you and we did do the contact form, twitter and then eventually finding Sprouts site and contacting them directly which even then it wasn’t until I tweeted about it that I got an answer. Finding contact info was like digging for gold, Other than the contact form which we did not get an answer to, there was no email to be found. I haven’t looked in a while, but just briefly looking again, I still can’t see anything else other than the contact form. And if you have a problem with your membership or login like we did, you can access the member only support.

      And honestly everyone was a bit defensive about it and were told somehow it was all our fault rather than being like, sorry we dropped the ball how can we help. It was to the point we didn’t want to contact you again when we had issues.

      If it is not your intention to make it difficult, then don’t take feedback so negatively and just use it to make things better. You can turn things around but simply showing that you get it and want to fix it.

      There does appear to be some issue because I have seen more than a few people complaining about having their sites not working or disabled.

      The membership thing is a bit deceiving maybe changing the way this is communicated so people understand clearly at the beginning.

      You are developers so you have to know that it is common for the shadier businesses to not respond, be hard to locate or contact, and have misleading membership packages. SO don’t follow that business model and people wont be suspicious or annoyed.

  • Reply
    Author
    Dan Cameron

    Jo,

    I believe GBS responded to your email inquiry on Jan 5th to resolve the issue as quickly as possible. GBS does not intentionally make it difficult for their customers to contact them. Even if the membership is cancelled you may still contact them via email, through their website’s contact form, the forum’s contact form, or Twitter. Again, please use any of those options to contact GBS support directly if you have any outstanding issues or questions.

  • Reply
    Author
    jim

    DO NOT BUY the GorupBuyingSite WordPress plugin! BE WARNED! http://groupbuyingsite.com script << The guy took my money and disabled my site license when I asked for a refund even though I cancelled the refund in paypal and he stopped responding. Just took the money and ran like crazy. ITS A SCAM. The Script will probably not also work.

    • Reply
      Author
      GBS

      Hello Vishal Lamba.
      We know that you’re disappointed with GBS but we don’t understand why you would post the above comment (and the many others) since they’re completely inaccurate. Your GBS username with us is “vishy” and it’s still current, if you were to use your currently valid API key GBS will work without limitation; your account is absolutely not “disabled” but you’ve acknowledgment that you know this already. It’s obvious your comments are meant to vilify GBS, regardless of accuracy.

      The facts are: with a full understanding of the functionality GBS has to offer you demanded we add an obscure feature that our users could not benefit from, we explained that the request would tie up a considerable amount of our development resources and declined to offer it and respectively we requested/suggested you defer to a WordPress developer to help you build your customization, at that point you filed a dispute with Paypal that was ultimately settled in our favor; after the dispute was settled you emailed asking for us to renew your membership and we respectfully declined because of your actions up to that point (which anyone could understand). Now you’ve threatened us with disparaging inaccurate comments that you’re spamming blogs around the internet (this being one of them).

      We run a respectful, honest company that cares for it’s customers. I would expect you would run your own company in the same manor, instead I see you trying to blackmail us into something against our will by spamming comments on respectable websites like this one.

      Here is a collection of links associating you and your business practices to gain perspective for all readers: http://sqworl.com/544jw9

      • Reply
        Author
        Vishal

        That link about me says absolutely nothing :) lol its funny that you even try this tactic to attack dissatisfied customers. Anyone who reads the comments above made by others here can judge for themselves how pathetic your customer support is. So, since you have chosen the path to SCAM people – YOU have to face the consequences!!

        Let people read and decide here who is the scammer….
        You could have avoided all this had you or your support team responded to my mails rather than keeping shut.

        OK. so now in response to your post – I don’t need to prove my credibility to anyone. People know me for who I am not what some crappy bogus site shows. So try all your want to malign me ;-)

        And – oh yah… speaking of which…… if anyone sees your site – there is NO SOLID CONTACT INFO or NAMES on your site at all…

        so, i wonder why? SHADY SOUNDING NO? Even your Whois is private. hmm… so readers can decide if they want to deal with a company that has NO SOLID CONTACT INFO on their site, NO WHOIS data (all privately hidden). tsk tsk. Oh but then we can always search the net and uncover the man behind the mask… Mr. Dan Cameron…. So, maybe its best for you if you reply to my mail and we sort it out in private instead. The choice is yours. Reply to my emails to reach an amicable solution.. or continue fighting here in public on this site and countless others that I will post on… no threat. Just a mild request asking for what should have been done. Oh and by the way – just for the record, i asked for a refund because there was a critical feature that I needed that was absent and that I found in Templatic.com Gorup Buying Theme (which is by the way — much much BETTER!!). If you reply via email – we can settle this and close these comments off. The choice is yours.

        • Reply
          Author
          GBS

          This will be my last response to you because you’re just going to write more inaccurate information spreading FUD about our much respected product.

          First, Mr. Cameron owns Sprout Venture and does not own _any part_ of GBS. We contract with his company because they’re an awesome WordPress Development Shop and they help us bring the best support for a Premium WordPress product around to our customers.

          Second, Anyone can contact us at anytime. It’s simple: http://groupbuyingsite.com/contact/
          WHOIS privacy is pretty standard now-a-days because of spam.

          Lastly, I’m glad that you’re admitting to being Vishal on Jim; which was pretty “shady” by your own standards.

          If anyone has questions or concerns about GBS please contact us, we can get you in touch with a number of GBS site owners and you can talk to them yourself. No other group buying product is as mature as ours and it’s obvious if you talk to our users (or simply demo GBS).

        • Reply
          Author
          Jo

          ok so while I don’t agree either with the way GBS is handling things, I was surprised that you said you found something better with Templatic? I have never heard anyone rave about Templatic. Woo maybe because they are superior to all in support and products. But Seriously Templatic is awful. They have beautiful design and concepts, but Their code is a mess, it is buggy as hell and their support sucks. Just had to say that. Hope you got your issues resolved.

  • Reply
    Author
    GBS

    Hello Vishal Lamba.
    We know that you’re disappointed with GBS but we don’t understand why you would post the above comment (and the many others) since they’re completely inaccurate. Your GBS username with us is “vishy” and it’s still current, if you were to use your currently valid API key GBS will work without limitation; your account is absolutely not “disabled” but you’ve acknowledgment that you know this already. It’s obvious your comments are meant to vilify GBS, regardless of accuracy.

    The facts are: with a full understanding of the functionality GBS has to offer you demanded we add an obscure feature that our users could not benefit from, we explained that the request would tie up a considerable amount of our development resources and declined to offer it and respectively we requested/suggested you defer to a WordPress developer to help you build your customization, at that point you filed a dispute with Paypal that was ultimately settled in our favor; after the dispute was settled you emailed asking for us to renew your membership and we respectfully declined because of your actions up to that point (which anyone could understand). Now you’ve threatened us with disparaging inaccurate comments that you’re spamming blogs around the internet (this being one of them).

    We run a respectful, honest company that cares for it’s customers. I would expect you would run your own company in the same manor, instead I see you trying to blackmail us into something against our will by spamming comments on respectable websites like this one.

    Here is a collection of links associating you and your business practices to gain perspective for all readers: http://sqworl.com/544jw9

  • Reply
    Author
    Marian

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