As a consumer, I am a supporter of the plethora of websites offering deals on products and services. Spreets, Living Social, Cudo, Ouffer, etc provide a range of different new offers on a daily basis for virtually anything you can think of.
Whilst I am not a regular subscriber to these services, I have used them occasionally and my experiences is that some of the offers have been more trouble than they are worth but, on balance, I am probably ahead with the ones that I have purchased.
However, like many massage therapists I am not particularly in favour of these sites for a number of reasons. The main reason is that there is a perception from massage therapists that it devalues the services that we offer and people may struggle to understand why there is a price difference between what is the normal fee for a clinic or mobile massage and what is available to them through the offer sites.
Typically the way that these deals operate is that the normal fee charged by the therapist, clinic or day spa is split roughly 50-50 between the massage provider and the offer company. So if the offer is for a $60 massage then the therapist may be receiving around $30 for their time.
Now I am not criticising massage businesses for listing their services on the offer websites. It is a business decision that should be made on a case-by-case basis. Personally though I could understand why a business would do it only in a couple of instances.
Secondly, a clinic or spa has excess capacity at specific times so that they would tailor the massage offer to only be available for say, between 10am and 2pm.
I have heard that often these offers are used by therapists/clinics whose businesses are struggling and it is almost a last throw of the dice.
I can say categorically, that our Sydney mobile massage business will never offer our services via these websites.
- We believe that we are offering our services at a fair price (and back that up with an unconditional guarantee of our massage services).
- We are different to clinics in that we do not have overheads as such but have travel costs instead. If we were to only be receiving $30 per massage then this may not offset travel costs and as such we would be working for nothing.
I’d be interested in hearing from anyone who has used these offers to have discounted massages. Feel free to comment below. If you are using them to find a permanent therapist then all well and good. However, the perception in the industry is that most people who buy offers are rarely prepared to pay full price, regardless of how good an experience they receive.
From those I have spoken to I had mixed feedback. Some people have been satisfied with the massages they have received whereas others have felt that the therapists have just been going through the motions with limited enthusiasm and commitment to the bodywork they are providing.
eg from a Google review of a place that offered discounted massage
Terrible! I got a deal through Cudo and the experience so beware. The experience was non-existent. My ‘therapist’ was having lunch as she was giving me a massage (!!) and the place feels old and dirty, held together by a safety pin and nothing more
Obviously my attitude is biased and I probably could have found positive reviews from recipients of discounted offers. But my perception is that for every good experience there is just as likely to be a poor experience so it is a case of buyer beware. As someone on Facebook the other day commented
Buy cheap – get cheap!