It's old news that big players like Google, Facebook and Amazon have (and continue to...) tried their hand at the local / deals space. To be successful, each has to figure out how to make the crowded space and somewhat commoditized consumer experience work within their brand. Facebook, for instance, has turned Facebook Deals into their new Facebook Offers product.... which is effectively an extension of their Sponsored Story ad products. It's a smart play by Facebook because it distinguishes the platform and the ad product to both consumers and advertisers. What's Amazon's angle? I visited Amazon Deals and, among some heavily discounted movies and toys, I noticed a two-night Vegas stay for over 50% off. Seems out of place... except for the fact that:
1. Amazon is all about great prices and great inventory, and 2. Amazon has become much, much more than movies, books and games
For those reasons, it is not so awkward to place local deals beside product deals.
And perhaps more importantly: purchasing can be as simple as a single click. Like Apple, Amazon has personal and purchase information for most online consumers, and that gives them a significant boost in a space defined by scale and conversion metrics.