eCommerce Gift Cards - Catalysts To Increase Holiday-Season Sales

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The humble and ubiquitous gift card is a paradise for retailers, even more so during the holiday season. According to, 35% of the average shopper’s holiday budget is spent on gift cards. It is a telling statement on the kind of patronage that gift cards have.

What makes gift cards so popular is the ease with which it allows you to gift your loved ones. It is not only great for the customers, but for the retailers too. There has been a marked increase in the sales of digital gift cards, especially after Covid.

On average, an online retailer sells 30,744 digital gift cards in December. That’s the holiday season. Imagine what could be possible if you use the right promotion strategies for selling gift cards during the holidays. More than 60% of Black Friday 2021 purchases were impulse buys. That’s a staggering pie in the holiday sale.

How do gift cards act as a catalyst to increase holiday-season sales:

Gift cards are easy and an almost-failsafe gifting option. They can guarantee you a new set of customers. 65% of consumers are likely to visit a business that offers gift cards. Here are some reasons gift cards are extremely efficient in increasing holiday sales.

  1. Increases order values:

It has the ability to increase order values. Did you know that more than two-thirds of gift card recipients spend more than 38% of the value on their cards? When someone gifts you a card, you will end up liking more products and spend more than what is on the card. In this case, not only does the retailer earn from the original sale of the gift card, but they also spend more.

  1. Safety and convenience for customers:

It is one of the best ways that people can spend on their loved ones without the cross of disappointment being held above their heads for not getting the ‘perfect gift.’ You can also buy them from the comfort of your home. The gift card recipient can also buy products from the retailer from anywhere, including their homes. Digital gift cards have changed the way we shop and gift.

  1. Increases brand awareness:

For businesses that want to increase brand awareness, gift cards is a channel that they can use. They are easy to identify and physical ones can be used as souvenirs. In fact, when you give your customers the option to customize it to their liking, the chances of it being kept as a remembrance of a gift is there.

  1. Reduces returns:

The pressure to give the perfect gift can be overwhelming for the average Joe. A bunch of questions, such as “Did I pick the right color?”, “Will the dress fit my friend?” and “Is this the brand she likes?” will be heard. This is where gift cards make your shopping easier since the recipient gets to decide what to buy. It inadvertently ends up reducing returns and the hassles associated with it. It is a win-win for all the stakeholders.

  1. It sells an experience:

While many of you raised your eyebrows a little, here’s how gift cards can be an experience in itself. Instead of going the usual promotional route like vouchers, discounts, or B1G1 offer on the gift cards, you can create vouchers for specific products or services.

  1. Helps attract new customers:

There is no retailer who would say ‘No’ to increasing their customer base. Do remember that gift cards are also like products. You tell the customer that you have new products when you sell gift cards.

Whenever your customer buys a gift card for their loved ones, they indirectly say, “Hey, I’m sure you will love this store. Do check it out.” You will invariably get new customers who will surely spend at your store because the gift card is already topped up with money.

  1. Increases your profits:

Gift card recipients spend more than the value of their cards. When was the last time you found an item that was at the same price as the money on your card? Never. Since the gift card is usually given as a gift, the recipient wouldn’t mind spending a few extra bucks as well. When thousands of gift cards add up, the profits are enormous. Customers spend an average of $59 more than the gift card’s value. It inadvertently has a huge effect on your bottom line.

  1. How to increase holiday sales with gift cards:

Last year’s Black Friday traffic was 110% higher than usual on average. It is the right time to attract new customers and show your existing ones why they gave their business to you. Use this holiday to increase your sales and welcome new customers. With the right gift card marketing strategy, you will be able to attract the right kind of audience to your store.

Let’s look at a few strategies that you can use to increase holiday sales with gift cards:

  • Create email campaigns surrounding the launch of your gift cards. Write down each of the benefits that it offers to the customers.
  • Ensure that the gift cards are visible on your website or near the point of sale. On your eCommerce site, you can add it in the ‘related items’ section.
  • Leverage social media to talk about your gift cards and what it offers.
  • Use contests or giveaways to bring more attention to gift cards.
  • Leverage Whatsapp broadcast marketing to reach customer segments of all types.
  • Allow customers to choose a later delivery date so that it reaches the recipient at their convenient time.
  • Even though your customers are getting gift cards from someone else, you can also offer a perk to the buyer. It will boost sales and result in the customer feeling thrilled about a reward they weren’t expecting at all.
  • Offer unique and convenient packaging choices on the same display. It provides customers with a one-stop solution for their gift card buying requirements.
  • Create holiday-themed gift cards to develop more interest.
  • Generate a buzz surrounding your gift cards by talking about it to every customer who walks into the store or emailing customers with information about it.
  • Use SMS marketing to talk about the benefits of your gift card.
  • Offer discounts and incentives to increase gift card sales.
  • Include a seasonal design to create an interest surrounding the holiday and your products.
  • Make gift cards a part of your content marketing strategy.
  • Allow your customers to design their gift cards.
  • Incentivize your staff to sell more gift cards. Create a contest where you provide attractive rewards to the employee.
Wrapping up:

Just by offering gift cards, you can utilize the holiday season to the fullest. If gift cards are not a part of your strategy, you should definitely consider them. It isn’t difficult as you might think. Thankful, there are gift card marketing software to set it up. Most of them are plug-and-play and can easily become a powerful enabler for your store’s growth.

For retailers who are looking to offer gift cards for their customers, let us help you. 99minds is a customer engagement and retention platform that helps you offer gift cards, store credit, coupons, digital wallets, automated workflows, referrals, and loyalty programs.