Daily deal providers like Groupon and a host of start-ups promise to bring swarms of diners into local restaurants. Couponing, in the form of daily deals delivered through email, text message or social media sites, has become one of the hottest areas of retailing.
But many metro Atlanta restaurateurs are deeply ambivalent about daily deals. They can bring in huge crowds but may take substantial cuts of a restaurant’s revenue while doing so. It is not clear that discounting helps build a stable, loyal clientele for the long haul.