MyVoucherCodes, the UK’s leading discount voucher code site, has launched its local offering with an iPhone app (and accompanying website) that helps consumers locate the best local deals via GPS. However, as we noted when the company first unveiled its ‘hyper-local’ strategy, the idea isn’t a new one and MyVoucherCodes is entering a space that is getting crowded fast.
In the local mobile discount market, Vouchercloud from Invitation Digital, which we profiled in February, is probably MyVoucherCodes’ closest competitor. So encouraging has VoucherCloud’s iPhone app been, the company has seen fit to take a slice of the lower end of the market too with a recently launched SMS-powered option. And of course, there’s also competition from the host of deal-a-day Groupon clones, of which MyVoucherCodes founder Mark Pearson has one of his own – and Groupon itself.
That’s a lot of discounting.
In fact, when MyVoucherCodes’ founder announced plans to go local, he talked up the proposition as an opportunity for independent outlets to compete with high street brands on the ground. Even today’s announcement talks up the ability to “bridge the gap between national and local shops.”
But if finding a voucher becomes second nature to smartphone (or any phone)-touting punters, then how long before discounts become a ubiquitous commodity, therefore sort-of defeating the point or at least any competitive advantage.
And let’s not get into the fly-by shoppers who jump from one Groupon-type offering to another, never to return.
All of which is a big win for consumers but then again, the aggregators or intermediaries can’t really lose either.