Zagat Serves Up Group Buying Site For Restaurant Deals

Zagat

Jumping on the group buying bandwagon, Zagat Survey next month plans to roll out a new online program offering deals at restaurants beginning in New York City.

"Zagat Exclusives," powered by Groupon competitor DealOn Media, will offer restaurant discounts in limited quantities for fixed periods. The initial price will drop as more people buy the offer, with the final price at the end of the sale interval what all participants end up paying.

Restaurant deals can take the form of a prix-fixe menu (including appetizers, entrees, deserts and coffee) offered at a special price or, say, of a $100 voucher for $65. Zagat declined to name any New York restaurants involved at launch, but said they will range "from relaxed and casual to special-occasion spots" listed in its familiar red guidebooks.

"Zagat Exclusives" will start with three to four deals a week and potentially increase to a deal or more a day over time, according to Rafael Cosentino, vice president of business development at DealOn.

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And because of Zagat's clout in the restaurant world, many of the offers will also include "meeting the chef, a tour of the kitchen or other unique experiences," according to Cosentino. In addition Zagat.com, deals will be appear on DealOn.com as well as other sites DealOn syndicates the offers to.

Zagat is counting on the group-buying trend to appeal to foodies and restaurateurs feeling the pinch of a down economy. A recent national Zagat survey found 39% of people say they are more attentive to prices in light of recent economic woes. After launching in New York, Zagat plans to roll out "Zagat Exclusives" in other cities including Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Zagat follows rivals such as Yelp and OpenTable in adding a group buying feature to its online offerings. DealOn has been expanding its efforts in the space as well, introducing an Internet-based exchange last month dubbed OfferEx allowing deal suppliers to bid to get their offers displayed on third-party sites.

4 comments about "Zagat Serves Up Group Buying Site For Restaurant Deals".
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  1. Katie Kail, August 13, 2010 at 10:14 a.m.

    Any company can add this type of turn-key solution by licensing an existing group deal platform. Companies like eWinWin have been doing this for years.

  2. Ruth Hadley from Restler Digital, August 13, 2010 at 11 a.m.

    Katie - Software is a commodity, you can buy a groupon clone for $500.

  3. Vickie Smith-siculiano, pmp from Say WOW Marketing, August 21, 2010 at 3:47 p.m.

    I think that Zagat will have much success with this group buying concept, in tough economic times...restaurants offering one time deals is a great opportunity for new business - they should think of it like a loss leader - I recently partnered with Groupon to create a daily deal for Mesob Ethiopian Restaurant of Montclair, NJ - the place is still packed, and the restaurant is thrilled.

    Zagat will have a great product, if they keep it for what it is, and not sell out to large restaurant chains, but the local restaurants we all love and who really need our help.

    Vickie
    http://saywowmarketing.com
    http://mesobrestaurant.com

  4. Joan T from lfs, September 29, 2010 at 9 a.m.

    If you want to see more deal sites regarding group buying, and has deal sites that are being listed in one place try stopping by at www.GroupBuyUnited.com.

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