Groupon: IPO, Milestones and All the Facts

Groupon has been all over the web with its recent IPO, but many still aren't aware of how Groupon works ,what it means for small businesses, or why this IPO has been such a dramatic milestone. We've rounded up some of the most interesting info out there on the pioneer in the group and social coupon craze. From Groupon’s worth of $1 billion after just 16 months in business, to the company’s partnership with popular social websites such as Foursquare and eBay, here’s a look at Groupon’s major milestones in the past three years.

An interesting current development is Groupon Now, allows retailers, restaurants and local businesses to select times and day for their coupon to show up, allowing them to fill slower gaps during the week. According to this CNN article, Groupon has a master plan: to have power over when you use your deals and steals.

Regardless of any grand plans they may have, Groupon Inc. has made it easier for consumers to buy vouchers at a discounted price from different types of businesses, but what kind of deal are the businesses getting? The answer is exposure. You can forget about the profits, its all about putting your business out there by having people buy the Groupon, and hoping they will visit the business again. So know the facts of how Groupon effects a small businesses.

It didn't take long for the business community to fall under the spell of Groupon. Businesses have flocked to the site to offer major deals to the buying public, and many have made Groupon a permanent part of their marketing strategy. But it's not happily ever after between Groupon and the business community. 70 percent of small businesses claim to "hate" the daily deals site compared to 76 percent who favored Facebook.

However small businesses may feel about Groupon, they are still raking in the big dollars.  However, the majority of Groupon's revenue is from outside North America. 54 percent of the company's revenue comes from overseas. That's not the only surprising number.  This article from the Atlantic covers some big numbers, including the fact that the company spent a whopping $208 million on marketing, mostly online ads, in just the first quarter of 2011.

So, in spite of of the mixed feelings from small businesses, Groupon is huge.  Exactly how big is Groupon? Well, the only website to beat it to its billion dollar mark was YouTube.  35 million registered is nothing to shy about for a website that's younger than my dog.  If Groupon can refuse Google's $6 billion buyout, then its time to look out. Here are a few more Groupon fast facts.