Center’d’s The DealMap, which serves up more than 350,000 “live at any time deals” from over 150 daily deal and offer/coupon sources, has released an iPhone app that “mobilizes” the service’s top features, including game mechanics, real-time discovery, crowdsourcing and user-generated content.
The app, much like the Web site, utilizes a location-sensitive “relevance algorithm” to select salient deals for users across eight deal types and 10 business categories within a one-mile radius of their present ZIP code. CEO Jennifer Dulski told us that the equation behind the algorithm tabulates “location + price + sentiment + time” to equate with purchase intent.
Offers originate from national deal providers, a booming list of deal-a-day companies, social media and other sources. The DealMap has formalized revenue sharing agreements with “several dozen” deal-a-day companies and derives the majority of its revenues from its affiliate partners.
Dulski says that where the app distinguishes itself from the online hub is in mobile’s real-time saving, sharing and user-and-merchant-creation functionalitites. The platform offers a suite of standard sharing capacitites — Facebook, Twitter, e-mail — as well as the ability to save deals for later viewing and add deals from local business that are not advertised elsewhere, all of which closes the customer feedback loop.
User deal generation promotes an element of “real-time discovery” endemic to mobile by uncovering local sales and deals that otherwise would never surface beyond the storefront. The DealMap incentivizes user submission through increasingly popular game mechanics, which reward deal submissions, downloads and pass-alongs with tangible rewards. A points-driven leaderboard tracks activity.
Merchants can also submit their own deals directly without funneling through third-party providers.
Dulski believes that the app marks a major advance in fostering a “true cross-digital platform” that incorporates Web, mobile, social and APIs that allow developers to build on top of The DealMap’s aggregated offerings. This networked positioning with partners, publishers and developers could aid The DealMap in separating from the increasingly dense playing field, with sites like Yipit, 8Coupons and Deal Radar also vying for market share.
As to our suggestion that a deal a day does not especially lend itself to mobile, where people are “on the go,” Dulski delineated between “impulse deals/buys” and “timeless buys.” Mobile is very good for impulse deals, she suggests.