Gift cards are an easy way to attract new customers, get money in advance, forge stronger relationships with the existing customers, and so on. You might wonder if it is even possible for small businesses to use gift cards successfully. We have answered the same in this article.
Here are some ways with which small businesses can increase sales with gift cards:
- Stand apart from peers:
- Compete with bigger brands:
- Increases order size:
- Market them across different channels:
- It helps with after-holiday sales:
- Offer unprecedented value:
- Hold contests:
- Sell holiday-themed gift cards:
How many small businesses can boast of having a gift card? The answer will be zero, more often than you think. When none of your immediate competitors offer gift cards for their customers, you will look more attractive in the eyes of your target market. Your prospective customers are thinking-”This store looks like an attractive option since they care enough to get gift cards printed. Maybe the products there are of much better quality too.”
The simple fact that you offer gift cards will change the attitude of your prospective customer about you. Your audience will think that you are a much bigger brand than you are. When it comes to marketing, isn’t it all about perception?
One advantage that a small business has over a bigger brand is that the former feels more personal and special. A gift card from a Walmart pales in comparison to a gift card from your best friend’s favorite store that she loves dearly. The recipient feels special and realizes that it is a well thought out gift.
When a customer walks into a small store, they aren’t expecting to see gift cards; this is why you need to display them prominently in different places in the store as well as on signages everywhere.
Did you know that every time someone gets a gift card, they end up spending more than the value of what is there on the gift card? Let’s say you get a gift card for $100. You spend $70 on your first visit, and since you have $30 more, you plan to visit again. During your second visit, you are attracted to a $50 product, so you extinguish your credits and pay an additional $20 out of your pocket. This is what happens with regularity.
Issue gift cards in higher denominations, which will influence the shopper also to buy more when they are trying to use up the credits in it.
Ensure that you spread the word to your immediate circle of customers that you have launched a gift card for your store. Most of them would be happy to check out your card and might even be open to spreading the word about it. This will result in a few people coming to your store, thus increasing the sales without much effort. It would be best if you also communicated about the presence of gift cards on all platforms.
Most customers purchase gift cards during the holiday season. Why? Because they use it as a gift to their friends and family. These gift cards are usually used after the holidays. After the holidays, there is a lull in retail stores because there will be very few customers. When your gift card recipients start popping in, not only will you see more people in the store, but they are also more likely to spend more money than what is there on the card.
If you want to make gift cards more attractive to the average customer who walks into your store, online or otherwise, then offer more value than what is there on the card. Let’s say that the customer is looking at buying a $100 gift card; then you can offer them $110 or give them a freebie like free maintenance or repair or something that increases its intrinsic value.
Use contests for all your gift card customers by entering them into a contest as soon as they buy one. You do not have to give away a prize that is expensive or offer anything that is beyond what is necessary. Maybe a bundled package or a special discount offer is more than enough. Create enough interest surrounding your gift card and the corresponding offer. Even people who were not looking to purchase the gift card will be tempted to do so.
Gift cards are synonymous with holidays. So why not create a New Year special gift card? Or you can even create a gift card that is themed based on the city where your store is. It will be even more special for the residents of the place. Residents and tourists alike will keep the gift card as a souvenir. The only thing you need to do apart from marketing it wisely is that you need to tell people that they can use the gift cards even after the holidays are over.
Now that you understand how big gift cards can be for a small business, it is better if you can add them to your offerings soon. Gift cards are an easy way to meet the demands of the customers and keep them happy.
Gift cards are a win-win for the retailer and the customer. It offers convenience for the latter, while it offers a multitude of benefits for the former. For small businesses looking for an easy way to get more sales, gift cards are one of the best options out there. Provide an incredible experience for your customers, create the right kind of gift cards that are attractive and aesthetically pleasing, and you will see the cash registers rolling.
If you don’t have a gift card system in place, let the folks at 99minds help you with it.