CEO, Interrupted: Crowdsourcing Hot Deals (Fatwallet / Slickdeals)

by Matt Rutledge

Hey, who put this chicken body on me here.It must have been 5 or 6 years ago that I first logged onto Fat Wallet’s hot deal forum and was blown away by the chaos, passion and excitement of bargain-seekers posting and reviewing the best deals spotted on the net. The voracity of users towards each other and “evil retailers” was like an art form, enhanced by the silly user names and propeller-hat avatars. While I was always a lurker, I absorbed this atmosphere with keen interest, reading dozens of thread at a time – I felt late to the scene even as an electronics wholesaler. Here was a demographic not only under-served but even maligned and mistrusted by the vast majority of the industry. Lawsuits flying over pre-publication of Black Friday deals, order cancellations without regard to PR issues, major retailers undertaking initiatives to stop aggressive discount seekers from participation—it was a battle, and a complete lack of recognition from the retail industry that this was a cohesive and powerful demographic to intentionally cater to. Sure I was observing a vocal minority of the users (it always is), but man were they ever vocal. I found myself agreeing with most of the agenda.

It was hilarious entertainment, it was exciting to personally find deals, and it was business opportunity just staring you in the face.

I’ve not kept as abreast of happenings in this space as I would have liked to. Certainly I learned quickly of other collaborative hot deal centers like Slickdeals.net and a few more but I would imagine there are trends and sentiment that I’ve missed.

Do you use “Hot Deal” Sites? How would you personally rank them today? What makes a good collaborative deal-site? What sucks about them? Are there any new ones on the scene?

thanks for your participation

matt

previous entries:
CEO, Interrupted: LiveShopping aka Worldwide Wooting
CEO, Interrupted: Take your protein pills (and put your helmet on)
CEO, Interrupted: Snapster’s unfortunate alter ego