Google V Groupon: G-Offers Bid For Deals As Facebook Jumps Ship

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But do we REALLY need another deals service? Just as Facebook ditches its Deals service, Google wades in to get a slice of the action.


Currently only available in the US, Google Offers is now displayed on a prime retail site – its web search homepage.

Offers, is one of the only instances Larry Page’s tech powerhouse has ever housed a service on its bare homepage, interrupting the clean design it usually abides by. 

This shows Page’s Google is serious about its deals business, recently announced, and follows a failed $6bn takeover bid for daily deal market leader, Chicago based Groupon. 

‘Offer’s is currently in beta version confined to Portland, New York City, and San Francisco but is to roll out to other US cities in the coming months – and probably internationally, all going well. 
Recent deals included 80% of a day trip to the New York Museum. 
Google’s new business is joining the likes of Jump On It, Living Social Deals and the steady stream of others who have joined the market in the past year – globally the industry is estimated to be worth almost $4 billion by 2015 in the US alone, a 400 percent jump to its worth in 2010 – just $873m. 
And it is an industry already well established here in Australia, with Groupon (formerly operating as Stardeals), joining the likes of Living Social, Cudo and Harvey Norman’s Best Buys. 
On any given day, I receive around eight ‘stunning’ and ‘amazing’ 80% off daily deals and is fast reaching saturation point (and flooding my inbox). There’s only so many 60% off massages any one person can take. 
Google’s websites combined attracted over 180 million visitors in the month of July in the US  and has plenty plans up Internet sleeve – meaning Groupon et al now has a serious competitor on its hands. 
“We occasionally include a link on the Google homepage that points users to important information, whether it be about a relevant cause, a new product or an offer,” a Google spokeswoman said. 
“Users can benefit from learning about great deals from local organisations.” 
Stephanie Tilenius, vice president of Google Commerce has also recently admitted there will be more “density” to Offers, meaning possible integration with Google +, mobile commerce apps like Wallet or Shopper or maybe even Android itself. 
 

No other deals website gets traffic or has resources of such titanic proportions at its fingertips. 

Out with the old, in with the new 
 But as it expands this service, Google has decided to ditch some of its ahem, less successful ventures including Aardvark, Desktop, Fast Flip, Google Maps API for Flash, Google Pack, Google Web Security, Image Labeler, Notebook, Sidewiki and Subscribed Links. 
But Google ‘The Innovator’ won’t be stopping any time soon – “We’ll continue to take risks on interesting new technologies with a lot of potential,” writes Alan Eustace, Senior Vice President, on Google official blog. 
“We’ve never been afraid to try big, bold things, and that won’t change.”
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