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Facebook starts offering online deals similiar to Groupon

Local businesses see huge potential

April 27, 2011|Justin McLeod | Reporter

Let's face it, we are always looking for a good deal.

Some turn to online discount sites like Groupon to find those deals.  Many local businesses say sites like Groupon increase sales and visitors.

Blue Collar Joe's in Daleville, the popular doughnut shop, offered a deal on Groupon earlier this year for 50% off.  The owner says more than 1300 took advantage of it.

Owner Daniel Knight told News 7 "some of our current long term customers got to benefit from the savings but it also brought a crop of new people."

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A hot deal right now on Groupon is for Cirque Du Soleil's Alegria.  You can tickets for 66% off for next Friday's (May 6th) show at 3:30 P.M.  More than 600 have already taken advantage.

Robyn Schon, the General Manager of the Roanoke Civic Center, told News 7 "I'm surprised, it's a pleasant surprise."

Many area businesses and consumers are happy to hear facebook has started offering deals.  Right now, it is only being offered in 5 U.S. cities.  Facebook users will purchase directly from its site.  Facebook will take a cut of each transaction, though the company declined to say how much.

Local businesses say it is only a matter of time before facebook expands the service to other cities including southwest Virginia.  Local businesses see huge potential with the online deals.

Daniel Knight, Blue Collar Joe's owner, told News 7 "we currently have 7000 unique facebook users on our own and a Groupon offer from them could be a chance to bring in some more people."

Robyn Schon of the Roanoke Civic Center told News 7 "I think that's a great thing because obviously Groupon has a couple million signed on and facebook has 500 million."

Facebook users can't wait for the local deals.  "Oh I think it's a great idea.  I would definitely use it especially if the right local business was offering a good deal I would definitely purchase," said Leah Bowling.

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