Group Buying Sites Gain Momentum; Are You Shopping?

May 19, 2010

Are you hearing about group buying sites as much as I am these days? I was at dinner recently with some girlfriends and everyone was buzzing about the great deals they found at RueLaLa.com (an “invite only” shopping site). When I asked about the site, they were all eager to “invite” me so they could earn credit for signing me up. And, any given day, I receive multiple emails from friends and coworkers about the latest Groupon deal. I also just noticed Mario Andretti and other automotive notables were launching the Carbon Fiber Club (CFC), a buying club for automobile enthusiasts that calls itself “The Buying Club for Car Guys.”

I have to admit, I think I’m getting hooked. I’ve already purchased a few half-price gift certificates at some local restaurants and I also just purchased my first Living Social deal for a 2-hour water equipment rental in Minneapolis. (Considering Monday’s deal was for discounted pole-dancing classes, they clearly have a wide array of options.)

The better group buying sites make it really easy to share so it’s not all that surprising that they are doing well. People seem to love sharing a good deal.

So, are you using these sites —¬†which, according to a recent USA Today article, are the latest evolution of social media and shopping? Jayne O’Donnell and Rachel Huggins point out in their article that much of the success is attributed to knowing the trends in a particular market and finding the best deals for users, which makes a lot of sense. I know I’ve purchased a few things that I likely wouldn’t have if it weren’t for all the buzz. How about you?