A Groupon before you close?

It has been nearly half a year since I last wrote anything about group buying sites.

Groupon DarabifI see Darabif everytime I’m in town. It’s the store thats been around Damansara Uptown for quite some time. I came back recently and noticed a blank spot, and Sara & I debated what was there before. Then we remembered, it was Darabif.

She had purchased a group deal for that exact store recently; 349 others bought the deal too. Darabif’s cost? RM2,722.20. Darabif earned after the discount? RM1,221.50 (at a loss of RM1,500.70). But wait, there’s Groupon’s cut which is half of what Darabif was to earn, so Darabif really walked away with RM610.75.

RM610.75 to feed 349 people nasi lemak and teh tarik for breakfast. That’s RM1.75/pax. When they usually walk away with RM7.80/pax. That deal expired June 6 2011. They’ve wound up June 30 2011 (their Facebook fan page suggests the nearest location is now Tropicana City Mall). This is the third Groupon the branch had participated in.

I asked on Twitter if anyone (especially group buying sites) had done studies to see how business fared post-group purchases. No one came back with a response. Google shows many people “studying” this phenomenon in America, with one example being: 5,722 new customers – how can I not love Groupon? However, nothing definitive.

Are you a business that has participated in a group purchase? Did you notice an increase in your customer base after the initial group buying thrill?