Sulekha.com, the Indian classifieds web-site is the latest to hop on the daily deals bandwagon, by launching a site called Sulekha Best Buy. Currently offering deals in the twin cities of Chennai and Delhi, the site claims to offer discounts of upto 90% off in on dining, travel, entertainment, movies, spa, healthcare, and others. There is nothing new to the site that could differentiate it from the others, in terms of the types of deals and how they work. A customer buys a deal making a part payment online till the deal lasts, gets a voucher via e-mail and SMS, and redeems it at the merchant by paying the remaining amount. (Hat Tip: Anonymous Tip off)
The site does not reveal how many people have purchased a deal, so we don’t actually know if it’s based on group buying, wherein the deal executes only when it meets its target number of buyers. It does not offer cash on delivery as a payment option. Also worth noting is that Sulekha has enabled gifting of deals, perhaps keeping in consideration, its international reader base.
At the time of writing this post, we were unable to execute a deal transaction, since it requires entering a Promo code, which is sent via e-mail when a user clicks on ‘Buy Now’. A customer service executive at Sulekha.com informs us that the site was launched last friday (10th June) and has been currently rolled out only for existing users of Sulekha.com. She also informs that it will be extended to new users in July.
The name Sulekha Best Buy reminds us of BestBuy, among the world’s largest electronics retailers, and we wonder if Sulekha is treading on thin ice with this name. A note at the footer of BestBuy.com states: “Best Buy, the Best Buy logo, the tag design and BestBuy.com are trademarks of BBY Solutions, Inc.”
No Merchant Exclusivity?
Why is that most deals sites end up getting deals from the same merchants? This only reflects that currently the deals space is mostly about struggling merchants trying to peddle deals through all possible channels and there is no exclusivity. Also, how can one be sure if the deal is really worth the value that it promises to deliver?
Take for example the deal offered by a tattoo studio in Delhi. It is present on more than one deal site and promises a tatto thats worth Rs 3000 for Rs 249, claiming to offer a 92% discount. Now it is entirely upto the merchant to decide the price point of this deal. The same holds true for spa, pubs and restaurant deals. A lot of people are actually apprehensive when it comes to restaurant deals lest it might impact the quality of food and service. And why would some one want the same deals from same merchants week after week? High time we get a daily deals site that differentiates itself with some exclusive deals.