How to Find Merchants for Your Daily Deal Website

Tuesday, June 18, 2013
how to find customers for your daily deal website
Finding merchants who are willing to post deals on a newly created daily deal site is a great challenge. Most merchants have already been contacted by other daily deal websites and they have had some experience, good or bad, with posting the deals. It is not an easy task to convince vendors that offering deals with your website is something they may benefit from. The merchants will not agree to run a business with a deal website that do not have an audience interested in purchasing their deals. They also more likely agree to deal with a reputable deal operator. So building your subscribers list and establishing your good online and business reputation are the primary tasks of each daily deal startup. Of course, you can’t do this within a day or a week after starting your website but you definitely have to do some groundwork before the merchants accept you as a reliable partner for distributing their deals.

How to find merchants to source your deal website? There are many methods, let’s review some of them.

Merchant submission form on your website. A dedicated page with a submission form for merchants on your website makes it easy for them to approach you and it exposes your interest in establishing new business connections. The vendors who contact you via submission form are obviously willing to run daily deals with you. This a great way to find diligent merchants for your deal business.

Business directories. “Yellow pages” sites and commercial web directories provide categorized lists of businesses, organized by category and/or location. It is a great source of information about your local stores, restaurants, spa and other services providers that might be interested in the daily deal promotions. Startup companies are usually more open to any chances to grow their customer base. So you may focus on local businesses launched recently.

Watch your competitors. Research your competitors’ behavior, inspect their deal websites and social media profiles to see which methods they use to attract vendors. You may also try to contact merchants who have recently joined other daily deal websites, they will probably agree to employ your deals service as well.

Advertising. The majority of deal websites advertise only to consumers and miss opportunities to advertise their business to merchants. In fact, almost any classified ads website has a dedicated business section, where “for merchant” daily deal advertisements can be placed. Other advertising platforms also have various options for business-to-business ads.

Social Networks. Social media is a key component of any business's marketing strategy today. Online networks replaced word-of-mouth communication, people interact and share ideas on social media and they trust businesses recommended by their friends. Social websites are good both for sharing your deal specials and for establishing contacts with potential business partners and vendors. Besides, many social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, provide good opportunities for paid B2B advertising.

Niche forums and informational portals. There are many online forums and communities where people exchange information on specific topics. That might be business forums where entrepreneurs meet, partner and grow their businesses or communities dedicated to your product niche where consumers and suppliers discuss their experiences. If you become an engaged and authoritative participant of these forums you will be able to monitor your market and to offer your daily deal service to the merchants.

There are many other ways to attract vendors to your deal website and it is up to you to select the most  effective of them. It is important to keep in mind that the merchants have the power in the daily deal industry, without them the deal website can't exist. So make your deals profitable for merchants, look for creative ways to arouse their interest in posting deals and help merchants to see all benefits of running deal business with you!
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