Even before its IPO, Groupon indicated that travel would be a key growth driver and it is indeed turning out to be so.
Groupon Getaways, in partnership with Expedia, saw its gross billings in North America increase more than 50% from October to November, according to the latest tallies from deals-aggregator Yipit [see methodology here].
This may be one reason that Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi explained at a recent investors' conference that the company is pleased with the Groupon partnership and the added reach it brings.
For flash sales market leader Groupon, travel and consumer goods gross billings, which likewise increased more than 50% in November, propelled the company's 6% growth in North America to $154 million.
Groupon's growth came despite a Thanksgiving-week industrywide slowdown, and Groupon's 6% increase in gross billings in November bettered the industry average of 2% growth, Yipit says.
Yipit notes that both travel and consumer goods benefitted from being featured in Groupon's holiday-oriented Grouponicus offering.
Among other deal vendors, Travelzoo's gross billings for its Local Deals climbed 44% to $7 million in November, Yipit says, although these "local deals" were propelled by a national deal from movie-ticket vendor Fandango.
Travelzoo calls these new products "Local Deal for Nationwide." Travelzoo and Fandango were offering two Fandango movie tickets for $14 at a $10 discount since they usually retail for $24.
Travelzoo declined to comment on the Yipit statistics, citing an earnings-related blackout period.
Among up-and-comers in the deals space, Google Offers saw its gross billings jump 150% in North America in November to $3.5 million.
The recently launched business is half as large as Travelzoo Local Deals currently, but Google Offers is just ramping up.
Meanwhile, LivingSocial, which is building out its travel offering, saw its gross billings in November in North America decline 5% to $52 million, Yipit says.
Yipit explains that LivingSocial's performance took a hit around Thanksgiving week, as did Groupon's, but unlike Groupon, LivingSocial did not offset the impact with a stronger performance earlier in the month.
The details about Yipit's November data report were published in a Yipit blog post, with further elaboration about them in a Crain's story.