The latest action by Groupon in its aspiration to become a local commerce default network is going into ad tech waters. The company just recently launched Groupon Partner Network, a new avenue that will be used to manage all the affiliate marketing for the company with relation to deals and additional products that it sells. Distinct from other initiatives from the company, such as mobile payments, the Groupon Partner Network has achieved worldwide treatment since its launch. The company has rolled out all over at least 10,000 publishers for content in 34 nations so as to help advertise the Groupon deals, services and products.
Sean Smyth, the Vice President Groupon’s global partner marketing and business development says that he that for anything that they seek to do with Groupon, they have their eyes set on what they can do to scale the heights internationally. He adds that with the building of the platform which their publishers can use globally, they will be able to share the best practices internationally instead of every country being grouped on its own.
Affiliate marketing is a profitable area for Groupon, with Smyth saying the company currently sets in motion and publicizes offers to users which include site search, email, and mobile notifications alongside others. He also said that the affiliate marketing has the highest conversion rate but the company did not want to reveal how much they rake in from this area. Nonetheless, the fact that it is currently the top-performing company’s marketing channels, it is not a surprise that it would want to continue expanding this avenue and have more control over it.
This is not the first time that Groupon is venturing into affiliate marketing. According to Smyth, the company has been involved in it since 2009. However, the company had until now just been running similar programs on a national basis only and by the use of third parties such as Commission Junction in United States and Vannox in Europe. The company is now positioning itself to become a distributor by use of retargeting and other tools for publishing, for instance the capability to choose deals by category so as to display Groupon offers which are more related to their sites.
The move by the company will at the end mean that it pays a smaller amount to the 3rd parties every time a user purchases a deal. The company is also promising the move will mean, at least for now, that the publishers who chose to become Groupon’s partners for affiliate marketing will get better returns. The platform is also offering some kind of dashboard to the partners that include immediate reports to help with tracking how the deals for the affiliates are performing. This is a feature that could create diverse widgets for linking through the company’s deals and access to the APIs of the company so as to incorporate deeper to a site. However, there is still a long way to go as currently, the network just covers mainly the popular blogs, websites and apps. In the long-term, it will lay the foundation for what the company may ultimately make use of the platform for promotion of services outer those of its own.