GroupDeals Officially Launches Groupon Clone for WordPress

If you’ve been waiting for Groupon style group buying functionality for WordPress, your opportunity has arrived! A couple of months ago I wrote an article on the beta for the new Group Deals plugin for WordPress. Group Deals has officially launched and is now available for purchase on its own website.

The plugin is launching with tons more features than were included in the beta. It was designed to work with WordPress and the WP E-Commerce plugin. Here’s a screenshot from the live demo:

Current built-in features include:

  • All the standard group buying functionality
    • Set Deal Price
    • Set Deal Value
    • Discount & Savings automatically generated
    • Set Deal Highlights and Fine Print
    • Set minimum sales necessary for deal (Referred to as ‘tipping point’)
    • Set maximum sales possible
    • Set start and expiration date
  • Fully internationalized
  • Google Maps integration
  • Facebook Connect integration – sign in AND sign up with your Facebook Account
  • Social Media integration
    • Like/Recommend deals on Facebook
    • Share deals on Twitter
  • Fully AJAXified login process

Those are just a few highlights of the capabilities of the Group Deals plugin. Future capabilities of the plugin may include improvements such as the incorporation of a referral credit system, redemption capabilities, multiple cities support, BuddyPress support, side deals, nearby deals, gift a deal, Auto-redirect to GeoIP-based City, and many more exciting new features. The developer’s plans for the plugin can be found at the tentative development schedule/roadmap on the Group Deals website.

Pricing for the plugin starts at $69.99/month and goes up from there, depending on your selected transaction rate, level of support, and updates. That may sound expensive to some, but given the powerful capabilities of this plugin and the lucrative businesses that can be built using the product, it’s actually quite reasonable.

Stay up to date with all the latest from the Group Deals plugin by signing up for its newsletter on the website.

63 Responses

  • New Recruit

    I had some high hopes for this plugin, but the fact that they charge a transaction rate on any potential sales that a person would make is definitely a red flag. Is there any other plugin/model that operates successfully in this way?

    Their explanation “Part of the Group Deals business model is to provide extraordinary, relevant third-party services via API integration to our customers, generally at no extra cost. The manner in which we fund these endeavors is through the facilitation of transactions on behalf of our customers and taking a small percentage of each of these transactions. ”

    Is very thin and cloudy..at best.

    I personally have no issues purchasing plugins, subscriptions, and support..I’ve had several..including here on WPMU. But I’ve never been asked to agree to giving a % of sales for purchasing a plugin..ever

    • Yes, I have and our company actually have this running live a part of our WordPress site for a while.

      The huge problem with this GBS is that it’s not compatible with WordPress Multitsite, they said it themselves. They have not been working to make it compatible at all. In fact, they have spent time working on (very expensive) addons.

      I suggest you find a developer who understand WordPress custom post type + payment processing to build you own deal platform, it’s not that hard to get basic features up and running.

      Please don’t get yourself locked into such service.

  • Hi all!

    Sarah – Thanks so much for the review! We really appreciate it and we’re glad you’re excited about the plugin.

    Anthony – In regards to another service that charges a regular fee plus a transaction fee – there are plenty, but probably the main one I’m aware of is Shopify. Also, I think it deserves reiteration that the fee we charge (starting at 5%) also includes PayPal’s fees, which are around nearly 3% for the average user. So we’re not exactly getting rich off the model :) Perhaps we could have done a better job explaining our business model in the Terms of Use section.

    Some examples of API integration that have required significant investment are things like our exclusive partnership with Adility to provide a global distribution network for deals to be submitted to, as well as deals to be retrieved from. We’re also developing a partnership and API with a company that will allow sites with vendors who prefer payment via check (surprisingly common) to have those checks cut automatically as soon as the deal expires. So there are a lot of great things that we’re doing to justify that minimal additional cost. Feel free to email me with any questions you might have about our business model or anything else.

    Josh – Great question! I actually met Dan Cameron, the lead developer for that project, at WordCamp Seattle. Super nice guy and they’re doing some good work with that plugin. Our goals for each plugin are significantly different – they’re trying to bring the group buying functionality to WordPress, which is what we also do. Where we differ is that one of our big focuses is helping businesses succeed in doing that. That’s where a lot of the third-party integrations and automation come into play. We’ll be working up a side-by-side feature comparison, probably after our next release. We’re just at version 1.0, and I believe they’re at 2.3, so they’ll probably have some features we don’t have, but rest assured, we’ll catch up ;)

    I’d also clarify the fact that we’re not necessarily more expensive. All of our licenses are multi-site compatible (You can use them on as many site instances as you want via multi-site) whereas their versions charge extra for that feature. If you compare the costs at that level, you’ll find we’re quite comparable. We also have a monthly version, which is significantly less expensive and we’ve found people really like who are just starting out.

    Hope that answers some questions!

  • Interested in the plugin, but paying a transaction fee is ridiculous. Whatever business plan they came up with to support this is seriously flawed and IMO smacks of the company over-playing their hand significantly.

    Ultimately, what could have been a very lucrative product is going to fail because of greed.

  • New Recruit

    @Justin

    I appreciate the thorough answer..
    It does shed some light on “what” is included in that transaction fee. The automatic inclusive nature of the transaction fee is a bit bothersome however.

    It takes away the flexibility of the developer/potential business owner to “opt in” to these additional enhancements.

    Your example of “shopify” is not really comparable. Shopify is a hosted turnkey solution. That is not what you are offering here if I’m correct.(if I’m in error please let me know).

    Again..this is not to disparage your plugin..it looks great. I read the previous post on this here and looked forward to it’s launch.

    As a developer or business person I’d want the ability to determine the scale in which I would want to deploy this when in the exploratory stage. Which is what I tend to think..most potential buyers are (exploratory)

  • Chris – It’s unfortunate that you feel that way. While I’ve never been called greedy before, I can assure you that we’re not getting filthy rich off of any of our business models. We’re simply trying to create a sustainable business that can help a lot of people.

    Josh – Thanks! We’ll keep you posted.

    Anthony – I totally appreciate your thought process behind what you’re saying. As a business owner and business-minded individual myself, I’d probably be asking a lot of the same questions, and demanding a LOT of value if a business was going to take 2-4% of each transaction. We hope to continually provide that value for businesses. To answer your question, we do offer a turn-key hosted solution, but that is not our primary service offering, nor is the transaction rate limited to that model.

    You make an interesting point about taking away the business owner’s ability to opt-in to value. I think we’d philosophically have differing views on that, which is maybe why our business model frustrates you. All the decisions we’ve made on the plugin development so far, from the API integration, to the payment gateway, even to why we’re building on WordPress when the stand-alone market for these applications is significantly more lucrative – all these decisions have been about adding value for the businesses. So for us, to have businesses have to opt-in to get more value simply isn’t in our business model or business philosophy. If we have to agree to disagree on that, I’m happy to do so and would still gladly buy you a beer any day of the week :)

    You make another great point that we’re hearing a LOT. Business owners want the ability to get their feet wet with the plugin without having to pay a ton of money, they’re in the exploratory stage, as you call it. That’s one of the great things about our monthly version. It’s basically $70/month (Which would about cover my mochas for 2-3 weeks.). Includes everything the Premium version includes, plus support/upgrades and a free theme for as long as it’s an active subscription. People love this for two reasons. 1) They love the idea of paying a fairly nominal price and getting support/upgrades forever. 2) They’re in the exploratory stage. They want to pay $70 for one or maybe two months, figure out if the plugin and even the business works for them. If it does, they may want to upgrade to a different license, which we’re totally happy to do.

    I hope that explains some of the “why” behind what we’re doing.

  • Miguel –

    Time will tell, and if that’s what the market as a whole dictates, then we’ll shift our business model. Right now, we’re making sales, so it doesn’t feel ‘killed’ to me :)

  • New Recruit

    @Justin…
    Hey I appreciate your explanation. I’m not debating the merits of the model..just speaking as a joeblo dev/entreprenuer. I like low entry thresholds when deciding on something that may or may nor work for clients or myself. Good luck with the plugin & business model. I’ll keep tabs you guys!

    Will take you up on the beer if your ever in phoenix!

  • @Justin I didn’t say you were greedy. I characterized the business model as overextending itself beyond profitability to a point at which the revenue expectations personify greed. This isn’t about not wanting you to make money and be handsomely rewarded for your efforts. It’s about subjecting potential customers to a portion of their revenue without a clear value prop for doing so.

    Regardless, I welcome our free market society proving one or both of us wrong. I seriously do hope you are successful, and I was looking forward to your plugin. But paying a transaction fee is not reasonable in my opinion.

  • Scot,

    Maybe this is why folks are caught up in frustration – we’re not talking about 5-7% of the ‘value’ price of the product. For example, say Starbucks sells a $100 giftcard on your site for $50. Your site then negotiates with them the same rate Groupon would, 50%. In a single purchase, Group Deals would pay the entire transaction fee of 3% (That’s 3% of $50, not $100.) We would also take our 2-4% fee (A total of $1 – $2 for this transaction.) So in this single transaction, Starbucks would receive $25 and the site owner would receive about $22, PayPal would get about $1.50 and Group Deals would get $1 to $2. Of that $1 to $2, a large majority of that will go to covering the cost of cutting the check to the business when the deal tips and expires, if that’s their preferred payment method. The rest is simply reinvested into our business model of developing other partnerships and APIs that provide value for consumers. I hope that explains the business case for the plugin user.

    Chris,

    Thanks for your well wishes, we’re looking forward to great success. :)

  • Design Lord, Child of Thor

    Justin

    OK, so Paypal transaction is taken care of, the vendor transaction is taken care of, and the site owner transaction is taken care of with a few points left to Group Deals. Good to see the breakdown.

    So Groupon typically charges 50% of the already reduced price on the item? Wow. Not sure this rate is realistic for niche sites, but I guess that’s up to the operator to figure out.

  • Scot – Totally with you there, that’s one of the awesome things about the plugin. We make it so that you can change the rate, per vendor, to whatever you want. You can even change it with each active listing. For some vendors, their profit margin is such that they can sustain the site taking 50%. But Groupon’s model is really killing a lot of small businesses because they simply cannot afford that pricing structure. So when businesses who are utilizing our plugin go to their local businesses with the proposition of “Hey, I know you tried Groupon and they killed your profitability? Let’s run a similar deal and give you 70% instead of 50%!” – that’s a lot more palatable, and we make that possible.

  • Design Lord, Child of Thor

    Charging for transactions and monthly usage is being greedy. I would be happy to pay transaction fees but having to pay $70 is mad if you are located anywhere apart from the us and europe. Its exactly the reason piracy will never die out – you can’t acomedate to local incomes reigionaly. You are limiting the potential of your service, thinking with your wallet.

  • Just as a side note, I’ve looked into signing up through sites like Tippr.com to build your own deal site and if I remember correctly they take $2000-$2500+ minimum from your monthly sales.

  • Charl –

    Unfortunate that you feel that way. I’m not exactly sure how to interpret your criticism in an economic light, so I’ll simply respond generally by saying that we’re just trying to create a sustainable, profitable business. $70/month or $249.99 for a one-time fee is far from greedy if you’ve looked at the alternatives. We’re not greedy.

    Schmidty –

    Correct – and that’s actually the low-end of what they take, from what I understand.

  • New Recruit

    Nice post Sarah – as always I love your work!!

    I’ve been watching this Plugin progress for a period of over 6 months and I can say it has been a massive investment on Justin’s behalf. Justin has done an amazing job and could have probably made more money if he had a 9 – 5 job. But would we have a Group Deals Plugin if that was the case? Probably not. Justin has a huge amount of integrity and a family to feed, to suggest that he is being greedy is plain rude. I think it is greedy to expect an entire kick ass website based entirely of free WP plugins. Just say’n.

    Why do Premium Plugins cost? So that people can build them and make them better for you. Why doesn’t Hello Dolly cost – because it’d take 5 minutes to make and there is no value in it. Why is WordPress still free? Because they are freaking awesome and had $64M investment. Why does Group Deals Plugin cost? Because the developers want to keep making it awesome for the WordPress community – and nobody has invested $64M in Group Deals Plugin, yet. And in the meantime it requires recurring revenue to keep the developers alive and happy. I think this is important, the happy bit, do we want sour WP developers making cool stuff for us. No. We want happy devs that are passionate about their work.

    When you buy a nice car you accept that you have to pay for additional petrol. The engine needs petrol to work. Similarly Group Deals Plugin has ongoing costs – there is the cost to purchase and then there are the ongoing costs that need to be covered.

    This Plugin is the Ferrari of Group Deal Plugins except it is better then a Ferrari because Group Deals Plugin has an option that doesn’t any require petrol. If the Ferrari option isnt for you – or if your client can’t afford a Ferrari then buy the Toyota Corolla ;)

    So to conclude. Nice post Sarah. And Justin you’ve made a killer Plugin that has some awesome functionality. The people that do see the value in this Plugin will be contributing to the features listed in the Roadmap and will ensure the longevity of this awesome Plugin.

    The fact that you’re already making sales proves that this business model already works and that people do see value in it. Brrrmmm :)

  • New Recruit

    -Dan

    While I would agree it’s bad form to make criticisms personal, there’s nothing wrong with questioning why there is a transaction fee.

    Justin explained his point of view in a satisfactory manner IMO..doesn’t mean I agreed.

    Anyone who has worked with wordpress long enough eventually understands that “hard to get” functionality is very slim in free plugins.

    The notion of charging transaction fees is not widespread enough for it to be considered a norm.

    I sure this isn’t the first..nor the last time Justin will answer this question. So this would be a good opportunity repurpose this useful discussion so that he can have some canned responses ready. =)

    Time is money..most who make their living on or apart of it from wordpress wont mind paying plugin cost/support if it saves them time. IMO

  • WPMU DEV Initiate

    The per transaction rate is a deal killer for me. There are a ton of groupon clones out there and several that even work well with wordpress.

    If you feel that strongly that ongoing api development is a part of the service, then you should have simply charged more for your monthly rates.

    In many cases, 5% could be the entire profit margin of a deal. Especially in the beginning when a new site has to drive a ton of traffic to make ANY money on the deals.

    And.. don’t assume that everybody is going to simply be selling coupons for restaurants and the like.. there are a ton of other models that would fit this type of concept.

  • WPMU DEV Initiate

    You know I was thinking about it. The per transaction rate wouldn’t be as hard to swallow, if there was some type of added benefit. Maybe a shared resource of blacklisted users, (due to fraud) or some other system-wide fraud prevention system and daily or weekly update.

    Maybe I was too harsh… but I think you’ll get a lot of initial responses to that per transaction item.. and then maybe things will cool down and people will buy anyway.

    Its obvious now that Groupon should have taken the 5 billion from google. ;-)

  • Dan –

    Thanks for the support, friend :)

    Anthony –

    You’re absolutely right, it’s totally fair for the community to question the transaction rate – I would do the same thing. I hope the answers we’ve given and value we’ll continue to provide sufficiently. You’re also correct that it isn’t the normal business model in the WordPress plugin world, but we hope to create enough extraordinary value to justify it. You did mention the idea of people being willing to pay for things that save them time – that’s one of the biggest values we intend to add is the amount of stuff that just ‘happens’ automatically. Payments are made, checks are mailed, emails are sent, and so on. We actually just started development on an awesome new value-added API integration that’s gonna pop-up in 1.1 or 1.2 that will be really, really neat. So that’s the plan and we’re sticking to it :) Thanks for hearing us out. Also utilized a lot of this conversation to answer this question in our FAQ, so thanks for being a part of that!

    Tony –

    I just read both of your comments. I appreciate you taking the time to think it through a bit. Hopefully you’ve had some time to read through this whole comment thread to see that you’re absolutely right, we’ve had a lot of push-back on the transaction rate. That said, I feel like we’ve done a fair job explaining the benefit added. Because of our transaction rate (which is truly nominal, considering it covers 100% of PayPal’s transaction fees), we’ve been able to secure exclusive partnerships with awesome third-party services. That means we’re able to provide value-added benefits that you won’t get anywhere else.

  • Hi Justin,

    Read this thread right through, just a couple of questions on customisation of the theme.

    Is there custom css area similar to wpec, where future updates will not destroy my customised code?

    Is there any explannation on refunds of unwanted coupons, or how is this handled if payment has been made to the merchant?

    Where is the FAQ you mentioned above?

    Thanks

    Greg Gillespie
    Founder
    HappyCustomers.com.au

  • Hi Greg!

    Great questions!

    As far as refunding purchases goes, that’s a policy that each site needs to determine on their own. The FAQ section mentioned can be found at http://www.groupdealsplugin.com/resources/faq.

    As far as theme customization goes, any custom CSS you put into the theme (In the theme folder, not the plugin) won’t be over-ridden when you update the plugin.

  • I’ll be using this plugin for a project coming up pretty soon.

    How does the plugin work in terms of enabling the deals, let me be more clearer… can we copy/paste the inframe into a post/page or is it automatically done when activated?

    What if we wanted to use this on another custom theme, how can this be done?

    The $69.99 pm plan really has my wallet jingling with excitement, sounds like a good deal.

    One last important question, how do you compare with wildfireapp.com?

    I’m now struggling 50/50 with you & wildfireapp.

    What could you say/do to make me go ahead with your plugin?

    Best,
    Naweed

  • Hey all, I’d like to throw my hat into this ring since I have a lot invested in this arena; I’m the lead developer and support wrangler for the GBS. I’m not going to talk about the business model for groupdeals or GBS, especially since I don’t make those decisions for the GBS staff, I would like to share that the development for GBS was a huge investment. All software, especially e-commerce, takes a lot of hard dedicated work.

    For GBS it still is a huge investment, 3.0 has around 200+ development hours already and it’s not even ready for beta yet. This is because it’s a complete rewrite and the plugin will introduce a entirely new API for future add-ons and integrations but we do a release every month and each release brings a ton of new features.

    @Josh asks about the feature set of GBS being comparable to group deals; from what I see there’s only one thing that group deals has that we don’t: Paypal adaptive payments. Maybe we should have focused more attention on adaptive payments when it first came out but we instead looked at international gateways to increase the payment gateway support ( GBS 2.3 has ~5 different payment gateways + two fully custom integrations ).

    That said, 3.0 will be supporting adaptive payments at launch, as well as: Authorize.net CIM & AIM, Paypal WPP and one other international gateway.

    The new GBS has a huge focus on Merchants/Businesses too; I can’t talk about it too much here but 3.0 will address the admin-business relationship. Similar to how Groupon is handling that now. Justin talked about group deals having this on their roadmap too, hopefully we can push each other to build something perfect for all.

    Anyway, if anyone is interested in seeing GBS 2.3 in action check out the demo: http://groupbuyingsite.com/demo-testing/
    There’s admin access available but all the options pages are disabled :(

    I hope I don’t get in trouble here but here are some screenshots from the backend of GBS 3.0; keep in mind a lot will change since we’re still in pre-alpha phase but you’ll be able to see what I’m very proud of developing ( our team at sproutventure rocks! ).

    http://s-v.me/6MPV
    http://s-v.me/6Mam
    http://s-v.me/6Lp8
    http://s-v.me/6Ljz

    As you can tell, we’ve spent a lot of time developing a plugin that addresses group buying; whatever cost GBS or the group buying plugin charges, we should all agree that we’re working really hard to provide a great solution for business owners & entrepreneurs.

    I’m really looking forward to future releases of the group deals plugin; competition is great and with this market being–globally–saturated we can both strive to develop/sell an exceptional product.

    Cheers!

  • New Recruit

    Thanks for the response Dan!

    Now that both of you are on here (since I’m still considering both options), do either of you have the ability to offer deals on shippable items rather than just an email voucher? Maybe I’ve overlooked it if you do.

    What if I have a business who wants to offer a certain product (i.e. book) and they want to put up 500 of them. Do either of your applications provide support to capture mailing addresses from each customer during the transaction so that once the deal closes I can export a spreadsheet with every buyer’s shipping address and send it to book seller so they can handle the shipping?

  • Naweed –

    Great questions! I want to make sure I understand your questions about deal activation correctly, but I’m not sure that I do – so generally speaking, deals are created quite simply by entering the information in the same type of admin area that you’re used to with posts and pages. For deals to be active, you simply save the deal and make sure the expiration date for the deal is in the future, and it’s active. For the deal to actually ‘tip’, the amount of purchases have to exceed whatever you set as the tipping point. Once that amount of purchases is reached, and the deal expires, then everything happens automatically. All purchasers, the site owner and the business are emailed. The business is emailed a CSV file of customers/redemption codes. All payments are also made automatically at this point. Hope that answers all your questions regarding deal activation.

    In regards to custom themes, if you can create a WP or WPEC theme, you can theme for Group Deals. It will work out of the box with any theme that supports widgets, as all the main functionality is abstracted to widgets, but you can also create an entirely custom theme using our functions/template tags, etc. and using no widgets at all. We’ll have several themes on our website as well as theming documentation in a few weeks.

    I’m glad to hear you’re excited about the monthly option, people seem to be loving that option for a variety of reasons.

    I’m only very minimally familiar with WildFire, but it seems like a completely different approach to group buying than what we or even GBS are trying to accomplish. We’re really focused on building an incredible group buying plugin for WordPress that helps to create successful businesses for anyone who uses it. WildFire seems like a much more expensive, managed option that is outside of the WordPress ecosystem.

    Feel free to email us on the contact page of groupdealsplugin.com and I’d be happy to answer any other questions you have.

  • Josh –

    Definitely! We have support for as many custom fields in the checkout process that you might desire. Out of the box, it actually requires both shipping and billing, so all of that information is saved in the database and, via hooks/filters, can be added to the CSV file that is sent to the business.

    Great question!

  • @Josh, 3.0 will have shipping and tax fully integrated. Right now it’s possible via hooks and filters, a site we ( sprout venture ) helped launch a few weeks ago does shipping and a few other things. Check them out at http://organicsoul.com ( not all of their deals are “shippable” ).

  • @Josh – Haha, totally know what you mean! We have a Showcase section on our website that is just waiting for sites to get up and off the ground, but since the plugin has been out for less than two weeks, we’re still waiting on some high-level production sites to get off the ground. There are a few that are quite close though.

  • Does anyone know what script/plugin/software mightydeals.com is using? It looks simple and easy!

  • New Recruit

    The Group Deals Plugin was built to fill a niche that the GPS Plugin was leaving wide open.

    Ultimately we decided GPS just wasn’t a platform for growth so we decided to invest in Justin and the Group Deals Plugin – we figured better code, better internationalization, better ideas, better understanding of WP community, better features, and of course there are all the things we’re not sharing here yet because… these are just some of the things we thought would serve the WordPresss community better in the long term.

    Now where was I? Oh thats right I was going to start finding GPS articles online and start spamming them with links to our software?!?! No not really…. no not yet… well maybe… lets see what happens ;)

  • New Recruit

    @josh I just spotted the tax comment – because the Group Deals Plugin integrates with WP eCommerce Plugin it already has a tax system bolted right in.

    On that note we’re quite excited to announce another exclusive relationship with another awesome third party TaxNOW. We can now provide automated and perfect tax calculations each and every time regardless of where you are based in the USA:

    http://getshopped.org/getshopped-news/automatic-sales-tax-for-wordpress-e-commerce-has-arrived%E2%80%A6-and-brings-with-it-multi-page-checkout/

  • Will you be incorporating other payment gateways other than PayPal @Justin?

    Just found out PayPal has banned me as a customer for life, for opening too many business accounts. In which case I can’t use any plugin/software with paypal checkout.

    So frustrating!

  • Naweed,

    How frustrating! I’ve found that once you finally get through to someone who can do something at PayPal, they’re actually quite helpful in situations like yours – you just have to talk to the right people. I would definitely recommend reaching out to them and going that route – until other payment gateways catch up with their Adaptive Payments API, we can’t promise integration with others. That doesn’t mean we won’t take a look at making it work, we very well may, but that’s the ‘official’ stance at this point.

  • @Dan

    Wait! What? Seriously!

    I introduced myself into the conversation because GBS was brought up, not sure how you consider that spamming. I was also backing Justin up in regards to development costs and effort.

    Anyway, not sure how to respond to your baiting comment but I will say the GBS staff hasn’t pushed for a WPMU.org article to spam, strange to me since it’s been proven to be a great solution for ~year, maybe you’ll be able to share your take if group deals is brought up in the comments sometime.

    Not sure if you wish the same but best of luck to you, as I told Justin, we can only better serve this market with good competition.

  • New Recruit

    @NS it’d be awesome to work on another option other then just Paypal. We’ll see what we can do – maybe there are other gateways that support an adaptive payments system (mmmmm adaptive payments)…

    @Dan – Sorry. I thought the number of links was probably not so appropriate in a Group Deals article and it irked me – I probably just roll a little differently to you.

    I agree Competition is great, especially in the WP e-Commerce scene in general. Competition = Market Validation. And the Market is thriving. I’m going to be talking about this in my upcoming talk at WordCamp Asia in KL later this month :)

  • @Dan I don’t think you understand my position. Maybe you wouldn’t have been “irked” if you took the time to find out; since I’m not your direct competition, we just build kick-ass software and are proud of it. That said, those links were to answer questions–a response–not “spam”.

  • New Recruit

    @Dan – dude like I said, I just don’t roll like you roll. I would have said ‘hey ya’ll for more information checkout my post on GBA over here” and I would have taken the non Group Deals Plugin launch conversation to another site. I dont want to sound petty, maybe my principals are just more old fashioned, we just don’t jive to the same groove… just say’n :P

  • @Dan you’re definitely right, we don’t “roll” the same, e.g. I don’t go off insulting someone, even if I’m intimidated/threatened by them. If you want to discuss this further you can create a blog post, since you roll like that[1]; we can discuss there. As you can tell, I’m still a little irked with your notions, so much that I’m baited into unnecessary defense.

    @Sarah, I don’t mind you removing all my comments from today if Dan wants to do the same, especially if you think it’s not going to help your readers. Cheers!

    [1] and I don’t think this is an appropriate place for you to squabble and make it personal.

  • Hi Mike!

    Just to clarify, your database of customers would be on your website, not ours. Nearly everything is handled on your servers, we just process the payment for you. Hope that clarifies, and if you have any questions about more details of why we do this, don’t hesitate to email us.

  • im going to try out the GBS plugin, it looks good and I feel confident in it after reading some of what Dan the writer has put on here. I hope GBS delivers! and works!

    I wont even contemplate GDP for the following:

    To be honest, the monthly fee seems to be at odds with the whole nexus of wordpress – free and community based, costs are fine for once off purchase of skills (ie themes and plugins) but hardly anyone in the wordpress wider community accepts or charges ongoing fees – so I dont want to be part of it.

    The other thing that puts me off GDP is that my experiences with wp-ecommerce have been utterly horrid. I fear GDP because it is associated with wp-ecommerce. I appreaciate that every complex plugin requires some “getting your hands dirty” to work for every situation, but wp-ecommerce is just bloody ridicilous and has shaved years off my life trying to get it to work as claimed.

  • New Recruit

    I don’t agree. WP e-Commerce has gone through some rough patches in the past and I’m sorry it wasnt right for you at the time. But generally speaking these days its really really good. The latest 3.8.x version is particularly awesome – Core WordPress developers have helped make it streamlined and sexy.

    The mere fact that WP e-Commerce Plugin is extendable enough for Justin to make a Group Deals Plugin that bolts right on is freaking awesome.

    The mere fact that the Group Deals Plugin has some major brands using it now makes your comment even less valid.

  • Let’s dissect this thing –

    im going to try out the GBS plugin

    Cool – no problem with friendly competition. I know we have plenty of customers who have switched to us from their platform, and vice versa. To each their own.

    To be honest, the monthly fee seems to be at odds with the whole nexus of wordpress – free and community based, costs are fine for once off purchase of skills (ie themes and plugins) but hardly anyone in the wordpress wider community accepts or charges ongoing fees – so I dont want to be part of it.

    If you’re insinuating that there are few reputable WordPress-based businesses that charge any kind of recurring fees (monthly, yearly, daily, whatever) – and that’s what it sounds like – I’d be happy to show you VaultPress, PollDaddy, Akismet, WordPress VIP and yes, even Group Deals :)

    […]puts me off GDP is that my experiences with wp-ecommerce have been utterly horrid. I fear GDP because it is associated with wp-ecommerce. I appreaciate that every complex plugin requires some “getting your hands dirty” to work for every situation, but wp-ecommerce is just bloody ridicilous and has shaved years off my life trying to get it to work as claimed.

    Just to echo what Dan said, WP-E-Commerce is the best option out there – there happens to be a lot of negative press because earlier releases were a bit janky. But you know what? They may have been janky, but they were innovating in a space (WordPress and E-Commerce) that no one else was back in 2006 (With WordPress 1.5!). Of course development practices change, there is developer turn-around, etc. So there are thousands of lines of legacy code that are getting refactored with every new release. There isn’t another e-commerce plugin for WordPress that commits back to the WordPress community the amount of time, resources, money and code that the team at GetShopped do.

    The truth is you won’t find another plugin more tightly integrated to WordPress than WPEC is, you won’t find a team more committed to open-source standards, or an eco-system around a plugin that is more vibrant. Sorry you’ve had a poor experience, but I’d happily take this opportunity publicly to offer to take a look at any bug you’ve experience or help you see WPEC 3.8 for what it is – freaking awesome.

  • I have set up my own groupon clone, but I did it via drupal, but I am considering recreating it with wordpress, as I am a lot more familiar with the features. Is anyone else in the same boat as myself?

  • Maybe this is a silly question for this blog at least but getting back to the transaction fee.

    When is the transaction fee charged on deals sold and not redeemed?

    Certain jurisdictions require the face value of a coupon to be honored for a period of five years.

    Maybe I’m being overly nitpicky but if a $50 coupon is redeemed one year after the deal closes for face value of $25 is the merchant still charged the 5%.

    Maybe I just dont understand the whole process well enough but if someone could explain that’d be great.

  • Well – I must say – a fascinating read, so thanks to all for the info.
    I’m glad I came across this post as there seems to be very little info on the groupdeals website RE example sites, documentation etc… and the demo is so sparse it’s hard to know…

    I also agree that the WPEC groupdeals plugin cost structure (transaction fee) is a bit off-putting. Hey, I’m a dev and have a family to feed too, but looking at the comparison, one charges the TF and the other GBS doesn’t but is more expensive up front.

    I would also like to know if anyone has any experience with these guys:
    http://www.wpmaverick.com/ it’s $99 to buy and no TFees, so keen to get any feedback.

Comments are closed.