Deals are more than a one off when combined with merchant services such as mobile payment processing and scheduling, according to panelists at BIA/Kelsey’s Deals 3D conference in San Francisco today.
Daily deal merchants can get a higher rate of return on their daily deal offer by implementing scheduling and reminder services, noted FullSlate CEO Bill Lange. “We are focused on a higher level of service and have customers with a higher lifetime value,” he said.
Lange said that service merchants in particular are facing a common challenge: They need more business, but they are worried about cannibalizing the rest of their business by having all the “regulars” slots filled with discounters. By implementing FullSlate’s scheduling service, however, merchants can reserve key times for their regular customers. They can also send out appointment reminders to keep down the no shows. After appointments, they can send out discount coupons to keep customers coming back.
Schedulicity Executive VP Dave Galvan said that scheduling software also lets businesses scale their group buying deals. One hairdresser in Bozeman, Montana, sold 200 deals, but it took 12 minutes on average to schedule each customer via phone calls. And the slots weren’t available. “Everybody wants Saturday at 11,” he noted.
The hairdresser reached out to us for help, said Galvan. Deal management and time of deals are the two most important things we do. Email management is a valuable extra. “Getting the email address of a consumer is a very simple thing that merchants forget,” said Galvan.
But merchant services go much broader than scheduling. MonsterOffers CEO Paul Gain noted that it is especially useful for merchants to get a rich picture of what their customers are doing. His company has a prepaid mobile card that not only handles transactions, but also lets merchants see what other local activities customers were doing, and at specific times. “It is a very useful set of benefits,” said Gain.