Traffic data from Hitwise suggests Groupon’s much-maligned Super Bowl ads have failed to hurt or help the group-buying platform in its battle with LivingSocial. The San Francisco-based research firm gave ClickZ an exclusive look at last week’s traffic numbers for the group-buying niche’s top players.
As the chart below indicates, Groupon had been hemorrhaging traffic to LivingSocial for weeks leading up to the days before the Super Bowl. The Chicago-based group-buying platform lost nearly 23 percentage points of market share, while LivingSocial gained 14. Part of each brand’s respective skid and rise had to do with LivingSocial’s mid-January $20-for-$10 Amazon deal, which sold 1,301,296 vouchers.
But for the week ending Feb. 5, Groupon grabbed back 7 percentage points from LivingSocial. And while last week Groupon (7.7 million unique visitors) dipped by 1.5 percentage points as people complained about its TV spots, its Washington, DC-based competitor (1.9 million) experienced a similar slip.
|Group-Buying Sites Square Off
|Weekly Share of Traffic
|Source: Hitwise 2010/2011|
So it appears Groupon was not knocked off its axis after airing its offending spots. A record-breaking audience of 111 million Super Bowl viewers watched the commercials, including one that began by spotlighting the troubles of people in Tibet before taking a crass turn half-way through. The public brouhaha about those ads led CEO Andrew Mason to author two blogs last week, with the last entry announcing the TV spots had been shelved.
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