Launched in November, Drop Down Deals Already at Profitability

A new San Diego startup, Drop Down Deals, is launching a website today that is intended to complement the free downloadable Web browser plug-in the company officially unveiled last month.

The company has developed a clever approach to help online shoppers quickly identify and apply valid discount coupons to their purchases. In an interview a few weeks ago, CEO Aaron Mendes told me that many coupon codes available may not be valid on websites like RetailMeNot.com, which attracted some 90 million unique visitors over the past year and is expected to generate $30 million in revenues this year, according to ZD Net.

“The coupons change constantly,” Mendes told me. “On any given day, there may be no coupons available for a specific site. Most coupons don’t last more than a month or so anyway. They expire and get replaced.”

Mendes says Drop Down Deals has solved this problem by developing a free plug-in that remains hidden until a user visits an online shopping site for which coupons or deals are available. Then the application opens a drop-down window on the right-hand side of the screen that shows the coupons and coupon codes available for that retailing site.

“We do it by a domain browser that automatically detects what shopping site you’re on and then shows the coupons for that site,” Mendes said. The company says the service works at more than five thousand retailers, including Wal-Mart, Target, Dell, Kohl’s, Hewlett-Packard, Travelocity, Expedia, Orbitz, Patagonia, and Ralph Lauren—and according to Mendes, “We only display coupons that are valid.”

Mendes says Drop Down Deals also enables users to apply the coupons immediately; it’s not necessary to got to a dedicated coupon site or exit the retailer’s page. “It’s a very simple tool that doesn’t bug users unless they’re shopping,” he said.

With today’s launch of a Drop Down Deals coupon site, consumers will have the choice of browsing through tens of thousands of coupons across … Next Page »

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Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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