Experts Explain Why They Don't Offer Groupons

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Groupon.com, a site offering digital coupons for a range of services and industries and other online deal sites, is changing the ways medical spas offer hair-removal treatments.

American Spa searched Groupon.com and found more than 500 digital coupons for hair-removal treatments in New York City alone, and according to ReallyCloud.com, the average Groupon deal results in a 56 percent discount off of the retail price. In a given day, more than 500,000 coupons are redeemed on the site, and 77 percent of Groupon users are women, according to the statistics collected by ReallyCloud.com.

Though this seems like an easy way to generate new business, industry experts warn against this advertising practice. Ocean Drive Plastic Surgery’s Alan Durkin believes that the digital coupon does build artificial business in the beginning but can damage your long-term brand. These bargain shoppers may be uneducated on the hair-removal process and become upset with typical results, he says. “They look at it as a treatment failure,” says Durkin. Hochstein MedSpa’s Jenya Titova says that the biggest mistake a spa can make with laser hair removal is to offer a deal through one of these sites. “It is very difficult to transition clients to regular prices. It should be avoided by practicing competitive pricing with comparable practices or location comparisons,” she says. Fountain Med Spa’s Todd Schlifstein echoes the same sentiment; “It’s a dangerous game when it comes to discount coupons. People will just focus on the next deal and not become your forever client.”