Groupon Success in the Campground Industry

Campground Groupon Chart
By now, almost everyone has heard of Groupon. Groupon is a company that promotes mostly local businesses by offering discounts to the public in a group buying method. A participating business sets the minimum quantity of “deals” that must sell before a substantial discount is offered to everyone who buys. For most who follow Groupon, it is not just a place to receive discounts, it is a place to receive interesting ideas of new things to do or experience, at a great discount. It is not for every business, and it is not for every campground owner, but it could be beneficial for almost all campground and RV park owners who target the overnight camper as a customer.

In general, the deals offered are approximately a 50% discount for some product or service. Groupon collects the money and gives about half to the business owner, depending on your agreement. Therefore, for the business owner, it is approximately a 75% discount. Sounds a little scary right? Well read on to see its full potential impact for your revenue stream.

The primary benefits are that deals are communicated to people who are primarily not your campground customers, there is no up-front cost to get your campground or RV park in front of their eyes, and the deal may be structured to help you sell your availability of weekday campsites and cabins. In our experience, virtually all Groupon buyers would not have come to your campground or RV park without Groupon. It is up to you to create the experience and environment to make them want to return. Not only does Groupon bring new people to your campground to enhance your future business, the offer itself can generate substantial revenue. In one recent example of a campground offer, our client received over $33,000 from Groupon, over $48,000 from upgrades for longer stays or to cabins (average upgrade was $87), and $37,000 from ancillary income (their average ancillary income per site per night is $31). In this case, a single Groupon deal for one campground will generate just about $120,000 of new revenue for that park, almost exclusively from people who have never been to the park before. Structuring the offer properly is important. Most offers won’t do this well, but a $20,000 to $40,000 boost in revenue from primarily new families is a typical result for our clients.

So if you are thinking about trying Groupon, have any questions about how the process works, or have any success stories of your own, feel free to drop us a line. We would love to hear from you. We have helped many clients through the “deal” creation and setup of terms for Groupon, and we offer this as a no fee service to our Preferred Client Development Plan partners. VDM Consulting Group does not receive a commission or any other fee from Groupon for helping a client use Groupon, we just use this as one of our many tools to help generate income for our clients.