PHEW! We’re finally able to step away from the keyboard for a little bit to bring you all some very important updates!
These past few months we’ve been hard at work updating Sqoot’s features and user interface. Enough with idle chit-chat, let’s get on with the details.
Migration to Amazon Web Service – With our recent move to AWS you should all be seeing a huge performance and stability boost. This migration also supports our efforts to onboard even more deal providers.
More deals daily! – Our deal aggregator now cycles through providers and imports new deals 4x a day! That’s a lot of new deals!
More Providers – DealChicken and nCrowd to name a few!
Throttle increase – We now support up to 10,000 requests per hour/per user.
That’s not the deal or page I was looking for! – Deal links had been incorrectly forwarding users to a provider’s main page, instead of to the deal they wanted. Have no fear; we’ll take you to the correct location now!
Deal results paging inconsistency – We have fixed an issue where paged results were returning an incorrect number of deals in the API.
Duplicate Deals – We fixed the deal fingerprinting mechanism, assessed our database and it is now set up to remove and prevent duplicate deals.
Don’t worry; those enhancements are not all we’re doing. In the coming months we’ve got some pretty good stuff on our roadmap including:
An enhanced reporting tool
Coupon aggregation – that’s right, now you’ll be able to come to Sqoot for coupons as well as deals.
As most of you probably know Sqoot was recently acquired by Clutch, and no the name isn’t changing to Sqotch. Now that we’re past all the really fun stuff (paperwork, logistics, etc) we’re excited to reach out to everyone to let you know how we plan on making Sqoot even more awesome than it already is.
Some of the quick things we’re focusing on as we get down to business include:
- API Performance - It’s pretty fast now, but we want to make it even faster.
- Deal Publishing Time - We are working on ways to get deals available through the API faster than they are now. Again we think it’s pretty good now, but we’re working to make it even better.
- Image Quality - We think it’s pretty good already, but we know that more and more deals are ending up on retina level devices and image quality is key. We’ll be working with all of the providers and making sure we’re able to serve up top quality images.
- Duplicate Deals - We’ve noticed some issues with duplicate deals and are exploring ways to fix this.
For the Long term:
- We’re working to really expand the number or providers coming through Sqoot. We have about 40 now, but want to get to 100 by the end of the year.
If you’ve got more ideas, we want to hear them and we’ll see what we can do about bringing more great stuff to Sqoot.
Send us a note to email@example.com
For those of you who might be wondering who Clutch is, one thing to know is that we’re actually a Sqoot customer just like you. Clutch is a mobile app that gives you the power to build collections, find the best deals and send gift cards to your friends, all while lightening your physical wallet!
Again, the new team here at Sqoot is super excited to continue to bring you the best possible service as well as find ways to make Sqoot even better than before.
Here’s to an exciting new chapter in the life of Sqoot.
The Clutch (and now Sqoot) Team
Check it out!
We’re thrilled to announce version two of the API!
Building version one was incredible, but it was just the beginning. There was so much more to improve on. Eight months ago we set out to do just that with version two. Today we’re psyched to shared it with you.
Quality. In short, it’s off the charts. Deals are continuously and automatically downloaded, normalized, geocoded, categorized, de-duped, and verified. This means a better experience for users and more affiliate revenue in your pocket.
Quantity. The new API has over 50,000 local and online deals from over 70 of your favorite providers. You can search deals by keyword, category, and location to find those that are just right.
Completeness. We map more fields and pair merchants to their equivalent Factual Place. That means you can query for deals using Factual IDs. Facebook, Foursquare, and Yelp support is around the corner.
As of today, we no longer support the first version of the API. If you’re still using it, please switch to version two (it takes less than an hour). We wrote a handy migration guide to help. On January 1st, 2013, version one will be completely shut down.
It’s been a bumpy road getting here. Supporting one API while building another put us to the test. If you signed up in the last few months, you really got the short end of the stick. For that, we’re really sorry and will make it up to you.
Try our new API free for 30 days. If you tried Sqoot before, try it again; your trial has automatically been renewed. We think you’re going to love it.
Avand, Brandon, & Mo
We’ve been working really hard the last several months to rebuild our API from the ground up, and now it’s finally ready to test in a public beta. We think you’re going to love it. Here’s why:
1. Quality, quantity, completeness
We built a brand new importing engine with smarter validations to ensure that we import more deals and with better accuracy. On top of that we wrote our own framework that lets us manage hundreds of advertisers and quickly add new ones. And we integrated APIs like Yelp, Factual, and Yahoo to help fill in the gaps in the data that advertisers leave empty.
2. More money, no more problems
We completely rethought affiliate tracking. Now when someone clicks on a deal we generate a trackable URL on-the-fly and send the user along. Have an “in” with Groupon; want to use your affiliate account instead of ours? No problem, we can swap in your affiliate IDs so you get paid by advertisers directly. More green, less hassle.
3. Loco for local
v2 is all about local. We cross-reference Factual to match our deals to their places. Use a Factual ID to find out if a merchant is running a deal across 100+ advertisers. Support for Facebook, foursquare, Yelp and more is coming soon.
Mo, Avand, & Brandon
Small businesses are not created equal. Some love technology, as evidenced by the iPad’s at their registers, perks they offer for checking in, & cult-like Yelp following. Others, not so much. Some business are still stuck in the dark ages, refusing to adopt technology at all costs.
If you’re a sales person who sells digital products & services to SMBs, you know how hard it is. Most businesses are not yet ready to adopt technology, be it online ads or mobile payments. In fact, 80% don’t even have a website! But what if there was a way to target just the businesses that “get it?” Well, now there is.
Introducing Score, a smarter way to sell to SMBs. Stop wasting your time selling to businesses who think the internet is just a fad, and start closing tech-savvy businesses in your target markets and verticals.
What is Score?
Score measures a businesses’ tech-savviness on a scale of 1-100 (like Klout measures influence). It takes into account dozens of factors like social media & check-ins, loyalty rewards, ratings & reviews, & daily deals. The higher the score, the more tech-savvy the business, the more likely you are to close the sale. It’s that simple.
What does this mean for you?
First and foremost, the deal API is here to stay. In fact, with nearly 100 developers building on the platform, we’re beyond stoked to release our new API soon. Second, we’re supercharging deal metadata. Soon, the businesses’ website, Yelp ID, Twitter handle, and more will be just an API call away. Third, if you sell products or services to small businesses, let Score help you find the businesses that “get it.”
UPDATE (July 25th, 2012):
- Watch our CEO, Mo Yehia, present Score in Mountain View
Sqoot helps publishers & developers make money & keep users happy.
While Sqoot publishers & developers see amazing user engagement, making money is still the most popular benefit. Duh! Given we strive to deliver unparalleled value to customers, we’re now allowing publishers & developers to keep 100% of commissions earned (previously it was 50%).
It just got even easier to make money. After all, why should Groupon have all the fun? Better yet, we apply the 100% payout retroactively. Once your balance reaches $100, we’ll email you with payout instructions.
Sady, on June 1st we’re sunsetting the widget. Why?
- Deals are not a drop in replacement for AdSense. Many customers that installed the widget (or the WordPress plugin we built on top of it) expected CPMs to compare with traditional display advertising. But ads payout on every click. Deals don’t (even though they generated much higher CTRs).
- Our API is amazing and we’re actively improving it. It requires a bit more upfront effort to get integrated, but the results are much better (monetarily and experientially).
- As a small scrappy team we can’t afford to maintain everything. Instead we focus on doing just a few things really well.
If you’re currently using the widget, you’ll want to figure out another solution ASAP. We may eventually come out with a JS SDK but don’t hold your breath. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.