April 14, 2006
Zixxo is a site providing small, local businesses with a way to offer coupon creation, management, and distribution.
The cost for the first year is free but a “nominal fee” will be charged after the first year, no doubt a way to increase adoption and, hopefully for them, a way to establish the value of their tools and distribution network to merchants.
I am unaware of any major distribution channels they have but they offer an affiliate program which allows members to use their API to put coupons on their sites. This gives Zixxo distribution and their affiliates a value-add for consumers to come back and visit their sites (no monetary compensation…at least not yet).
Users can search for coupons by geography (zipcode) and find merchants that are offering coupons/discounts in their area.
Think of this is an early stage of Shop Local but you search for coupons rather than sale items and you search for small merchants rather than large chains. They seem to be supplementing with some larger merchants as well (i.e. WalMart and Staples. I don’t know if these large merchants are entering their data directly into the Zixxo system or if this data was collected using an editorial staff or automated method.
The site is an interesting concept and should be useful to merchants and consumers alike (although they won’t be the first to offer local coupons but they are the first to offer a site dedicated to it and offering notification tools for them). My only complaint is the site doesn’t appear ready, some of the navigation is not intuitive (and tries to force registration), some links aren’t working, the search results don’t show things in my area, and they asked me to register (and provide a tax ID) using non-secure forms.