Admit it, we all love a good bargain. Huge discounts at an otherwise expensive restaurant, spa for your 4-legged friend and don’t forget that overseas vacation that you can finally afford to bring the whole extended family to. Where can you get these amazing deals, if not from group buying sites?
Group buying sites are really popular. In fact, group buying sites has gotten so popular that there are even WordPress group buying themes available for you to start your very own group buying site!
What are Group Buying Sites?
As the name suggest, group buying sites are websites who offer various products and services at greatly discounted prices. The only catch is that, some deals require a minimum number of buyers before merchants are willing to sell at that price. If this number is met, then the deal is on. If they are interested, buyers will need to enter their payment details. Once the confirmation is received, buyers can then print the vouchers and redeem them.
Group buying sites take advantage of the concept of buying in bulk. This is the reason why merchants are able to offer such low prices. At the same time, merchants are taking a gamble too. If the numbers are not high enough, they will suffer loss from this partnership. So why are the merchants still willing to take such “risks”? For marketing purposes. They are looking for repeat business and publicity!
Best Group Buying Sites in Malaysia
The following 4 group buying sites are recommended based on my online shopping experiences at these and a few other similar e-commerce sites.
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While not the first company to venture into the group buying business model, they certainly are one of the largest and most popular in the world. They have offices in more than 40 countries in the world. Their success has influenced many similar sites mushrooming all over.
Groupon Malaysia was launched in 2011 by forming an alliance with a local group buying site called GroupsMore. Slightly more than 2 years later, they have commanded such a following that they have an Alexa Malaysia ranking of 55.
They have localized deals for a few major cities e.g. Klang Valley, Penang, Johor Bahru, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Ipoh and Melaka. All deals are grouped in categories like shopping and getaways for easy browsing.
There are even exclusive discount deals for purchases made through Maybank2u. For mobile users, there’s also Groupon Malaysia app that you can download.
Each deal comes with detailed information, the highlights, fine print and how it works. I especially like the deals’ witty descriptions and catchy pictures!
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MyDeal offers plenty of deals both in and out of Malaysia and in various categories like products, travel, wellness, activities and dining deals. There’s also a bestsellers category where they list their most popular deals. Here, you can find deals with discounts of up to 90%!
MyDeal is backed by an international e-commerce company Rebate Networks, the same company who established the deals site, LivingSocial in the US and Canada.
You can also find local deals for cities like Kuala Lumpur, Johor Bahru, Penang, Kota Kinabalu and Singapore. Payment is flexible and they accept transfers from major banks and also via credit cards.
They even give you a chance to earn cash. If you are able to refer a friend who eventually spend RM30 at MyDeal, you will have Rm10 credited to your account. Don’t worry, this credit will not expire too soon!
Facebook likes: 78,339
You could be forgiven if at first glance, you think Dealmates seemed to offer more ladies’ deals, with categories like luxury, fashion and beauty. Especially when they recently added a new category for mummies and babies called goMummy.my. While they do have quite a lot of categories for female shoppers, they do offer a wide range of deals like gadgets, auto and health care.
Dealmates was set up by Catcha Group in 2011 and though they may not be as big as Groupon Malaysia, they are fast gaining popularity with over 30,000 visitors a day.
When you first register, you will get RM5 off your first purchase. Similar to MyDeal, they also offer reward of RM10 in credits when you refer a friend and they buy a deal. Other benefits offered include 100% money back guarantee (there are terms & conditions) and 100% brand guarantee. On top of that, this group buy site also offers an incentive and reward program where you get 3% credit rebate (with 14-day validity) of your total cash value paid.
Dealmates offers customer care via live chat, phone, email, Facebook and Twitter from Monday to Friday between 9:30am to 5pm, except public holidays.
Facebook likes: 3,372
GroupMe is a newcomer in the group buying sites scene in Malaysia. They are owned by Lelong.my. Yes, the same guys who own the pioneer auction website of the same name in Malaysia and who also own Superbuy.my and Clo.my. These are two rather popular e-commerce websites in Malaysia. So, it’s a natural progression and given their experiences, these guys know what they are doing.
They offer varies deals for various categories of products, including for the home, F&B, gadgets, kids, health care and fashion. Many of their offers are pretty interesting and not the run-of-the-mill restaurant and vacation deals. Do note that shipping fee is usually not included in the deal price.
Overall, I think GroupMe has the ability to match the other more established deals site.
Which site is the best?
Seriously, this is tough to answer. It all depends on individual taste and preference. Personally, I would rate DealMates as the better site for unique deals. Reason being that I have found many interesting deals that were not found anywhere else, on this particular e-commerce site. Many seemed to agree so, based on statistics.
Take a look at the above charts. They show a comparison of estimated daily unique pageviews and estimated time on site between the 4 group buying sites. From these charts, you can see that DealMates has a higher overall unique pageviews of 5 – 9 pageviews for the last 3 months. And that DealMates’ visitors also spend a longer time on the site.
I would also advise that you exercise some caution when buying from these sites. Not so much of the risks of your personal information being misused, though the risk is there. But rather on the lookout for unethical merchants as there had been cases where goods were not delivered or the products were not as per described. Should you face such issues, do report to the group buying site for further actions.
Frankly, with deals more than 50% off, I doubt if you could find discounts as significant as those that you can find on group buying sites. With the variety of categories (with catchy pictures and descriptive information), making online shopping whether it’s for yourself or as a gift, an easy and affordable option.
Know of any other good group buying sites? Care to share your shopping experiences at group buying sites?