Gift cards are one of the most popular holiday gifts and have been since they became widely available in the late 90’s. They’re convenient and let the recipient choose something they want, yet somehow they’re more of a gift than cash, which as Seinfeld pointed out, is like something you’d get from your uncle:
Gift cards used to be exclusive to large retailers and corporate brands, but with today’s point of sale (POS) software, any size business can offer gift cards and track their use. Gift cards are a great way to drive customers to your store, serve new customers, and reward your existing customers. They are also a strong incentive for people to spend more at your store. According to the National Retail Federation, 61% of people who received gift cards to a store spent more than the amount on the card. In fact, these purchases averaged $29 more than the value of the gift card.
Let’s face it, gift giving usually isn’t easy. Gift cards can save the day and make you look respectable when you missed the hints and don’t know what to get someone. Here some ideas on how you can use gift cards to help the gift giving challenged out there – and get more sales for your business.
#1. Make it easy to use your gift cards
Not only should your gift cards be front and center at the register, you need to make sure that customers can purchase gift cards on the go from your website. Using the Clover Gift Cards app, customers can purchase gift cards, check their gift card balance, and make purchases with their phones. This makes buying and using gift cards a snap.
During the holiday season advertise gift cards on Facebook Ads or as retargeting ads. They work well because they make the buying decision so easy.
#2. Customize for all occasions
People buy gift cards for, well, any occasion that calls for a gift. The thing that makes them more appealing than just giving cash is that gift cards can be customized for the occasion. A graduation gift card for someone’s graduation is more thoughtful (even if the uncle is giving it!). The gift card app through your POS lets you customize the designs of your cards with your branding or to match your customer’s needs. In store, take the time to package cards in a small gift bag or nice envelope to give them the feeling a special gift.
#3. Get out into the community
Use your gift card program as an incentive for new and existing customers to keep coming back. Donate your cards to charity fundraisers to increase your exposure in the community. Create incentives to buy gift cards by adding an additional $10 to every $100 card purchased. The Gift Card app will make accessing and using your gift cards easy for customers and makes promotions simple to execute for you.
#5. Measure and review performance
The benefit of using a good point of sale system is that you can easily track and measure gift card performance. If sales start to slow, then offer up a fresh, new design. Schedule promotions in the days leading up to holidays when customers are looking for options. Use data to discover customers who tend to buy gift cards, then send promotions to them during the holidays.
Gift cards are easy for your business to manage and create. But the most important reason to offer them is because they provide an important, needed option for shoppers. Picking a sweater for someone – that they’ll really like – is tough. But a gift card that lets them choose the sweater you’re giving them is a delight.
With custom designs available for all occasions, a gift card creates a much kinder perception than cold, hard cash. It also ties the final purchase to your store, which is, of course, essential to your bottom line.
Here’s Brandon with more tips on gift cards: