Groupon issues a challenge to Square with today's Gnome release

by Keidra Chaney
May 19, 2014

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Groupon today announced the launch of its new iPad-based point-of-sale system for local retailers, called Gnome (pronounced “Gee-nome”). The system enables paperless Groupon voucher redemption, in addition to CRM functionality, an “all-in-one cash register” that accepts debit and credit card payments, point-of-sale services including inventory management, and integration with accounting tools like Quickbooks and Xeno.
 
“Gnome will serve as an operating system for merchants to run their entire operation and enable them to create real-time promotions that bring customers into their business when they need them the most,” said Groupon CEO Eric Lefkofsky in a statement issued this morning.
 
Gnome’s features are integrated within Groupon’s own product platform system, providing Groupon merchants with a more streamlined process for administering promotions and redeeming vouchers. Merchants will be able to redeem customer Groupons via Bluetooth technology or by using a customer’s name, voucher number, or Groupon ID. Through Gnome, merchants will also be able to administer limited-time deals during any time of the day to pick up slow sales, similar to the Groupon Now service.
 
In addition, Gnome functions as an independent point of sale solution that functions similarly to iPad-based competitor Square Register. Merchants will have the ability to process credit and debit card payments, manage inventory and print/e-mail receipts to customers.
 
With the unveiling of Gnome, Groupon makes another step towards rebranding itself as a potential rival to payment management tools like Square and PayPal, in addition to helping merchants manage promotions and build customer relationships. 
 
Groupon’s first move into point-of-sale services was the launch of 2012’s Breadcrumb app for iPad. However, Gnome boasts more sophisticated features, including its integrated Customer Relationship Management module that allows merchants to access customer purchase history and develop customized marketing campaigns.
 
Groupon will charge $10/month for Gnome. The system will be rolled out to Groupon merchants within the coming months. More information on Gnome can be found here
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