1. Always Look for Promo Codes Before You Buy
Just because you’re buying a deal doesn’t mean you should stop looking for discounts. Luckily Groupon is large enough that it works on affiliate platforms and constantly offers promos for third-party sites – which equates to coupon codes for buyers. A Google search will turn up dozens of Groupon promo codes, or use a browser extension like PriceBlink.com, Coupons at Checkout, Invisible Hand, or Honey to easily find and add coupons automatically.
2. Search Other Cities and Attractions
It can’t hurt to search other cities for deals. Groupon has done a good job of evening out the playing field to make sure that most major cities offer a comparable number of deals, but it’s always good to comparison shop. At the end of the day, if a service is going to save you hundreds, traveling a little further to get there may be well worth it.
Also consider looking up Groupon deals by major attractions, as certain cities are now organized even further and broken into sections around the venues with heavy visitor foot traffic.
3. Sell Unused Vouchers
Groupon’s policy on unclaimed vouchers has improved since the early days. But if you buy a voucher you want to ditch, you can sell it online, or digitally “flip” it. CoupFlip, an online aftermarket for daily deals, allows you to buy and sell deals from most major cities instantly through a three-step process. Simply paste the URL for your deal, and get a buy-back offer on the spot. As a word of warning, these aftermarket sites tend to come and go, so if you do go the aftermarket route, be sure to use a legitimate site that has been around for more than a few months.
4. Expand Your Shopping Expectations
Groupon has grown well beyond spa and restaurant vouchers. Today, the company has a variety of different buying opportunities you might not expect. Some of the best ones include: Groupon Grassroots (support charitable causes); Groupon Getaways; Groupon Freebies; Groupon Reserve; and Groupon Live (tickets).
5. Find the Right Deals Easier by Using the Site More Often
As with most things in life, the more effort you put in the more you’ll get out of it. Interact with the site frequently to get a better understanding of everything it has to offer. You’ll begin to learn what type of deals you should expect, and what type of deals are a rarity. In this fashion, you can then jump on the best deals fast because you’ll know what is special and what is always there. Moving forward, the site will learn your behavior and offer up deals based on what it thinks you want.
6. Use Personalization Features to ‘Teach’ Groupon What You Like
Categorize your deals as you shop to make the Groupon experience more useful. Under each deal there are words to describe what section the deal falls into along with a gray heart. To show interest in that category, hover over the heart, which will turn into a plus sign; just click to add it to your favorites.
7. Go Mobile to Get More Targeted Deals
Groupon started as a deal site providing local deals depending on where you were located and the emphasis on location has only grown. By using the mobile version of Groupon, you provide the company with detailed information about your current location and by buying on the go, you teach the company the locations at which you generally spend money. Groupon then knows where you’re likely to buy, and serves up more hyperlocal deals. The company will recognize the times you buy out of your normal zone, like gift purchases in different states and short-term purchases out of your normal zone that may denote a vacation.
8. Use Social Media to Get the Inside Scoop on Deals
Groupon is no stranger to leaking information gradually to build up excitement, and it often turns to social media rather than emails. Your best bet is to like and follow Groupon to get the inside scoop on deals and promotion. In this way, you don’t need to scour the site for new promotions; they will just show up on the news feeds you’re already perusing. Also be prepared to interact with the company on social streams for extra rewards. For example, a recent Valentine’s Day #GrouponKiss photo contest that gave away over $2,000 in Groupon bucks required users to post favorite smooch pictures on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.
9. Know Where to Find Site-Wide Promotions
Groupon has taken a no-holds-barred approach to the holidays using creative promotions and sweepstakes to reel in shoppers. Groupon’s annual shopping page, once called Grouponicus, truly focused on giving back this, offering between $500 and $25,000 in Groupon bucks. Groupon categorizes all of its major site-wide promotions under “occasions” and you can usually find details at groupon.com/occasions as well as on the menu in the far right tab. And of course, these deals are usually posted on social media first.
10. Look for Promotions by Section
Each main section of Groupon (All Deals, Local, Goods, Getaways, Reserve, and the extra promo tab) has its own, semi-secret promotional calendar. This calendar may include national and retail holidays, but in general it is exclusive to Groupon. Having calendars separate from “regular” holidays allows the company to surprise you with promotions and essentially create holidays. If you want to scan the site quickly for extra money-saving promotions, login and scroll through each of the top sectional tabs to look for category-specific promotions.