If Gilt Groupe can ship its flash sale fashion to 90 countries, why shouldn’t daily deals deliver discounted lunch right to your desk? LivingSocial is breaking into new territory by expanding its Instant feature. Instant already offers real-time deals (mostly on food) to be used, well, instantly; now the deals site is testing an incorporated delivery service in Washington, D.C.
The new endeavor has two sides — a more quotidian component lets restaurants link their deals to their Instant profiles, and then deliver the discounted orders through Instant purchases. A second, fancier part of the initiative is called Room Service, and offers select delivery from one upscale restaurant each week, on Thursday and Friday evenings only. It sounds great if you just moved and owe someone a date — Room Service includes tableware and “dining accessories.”
If either component takes off (our money’s on the streamlined, lunchtime-focused daily deal delivery) it could be a boon for LivingSocial, which is the second-biggest deals site after Groupon. And as both flash sales and deals sites increasingly diversify to stay afloat, this seems like an obvious, convenient way to attract and keep an audience. After all, it’s not like you order anything else online and then have to go pick it up.