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Gift Card Insights: Gift Card Usage Grows

Gift Card Insights

Over 3,300 U.S. consumers over the age of 18 were surveyed for this year’s Consumer Insights Study from First Data. The Consumer Insights study provides a comprehensive gift card insights on consumer usage. This year’s study shows how vital gift card programs are to a retailer’s marketing strategy. The popularity of online shopping and usage of mobile wallets have been embraced by consumers, as the desire grows for faster and more personalized shopping experiences.

Gift Cards Drive Revenue

We know that gift cards can drive traffic to your store, but how are they increasing retailers’ bottom line?

  • 70% of consumers have purchased or received closed-loop plastic or e-gift cards in the past 12 months
  • 52% of consumers say that receiving a gift card prompted them to visit a store more frequently while 40% say they wouldn’t even have visited the location if it weren’t for receiving the gift card
  • A whopping 69% of gift card recipients spend more than the value of their gift card
  • $27.29 was the average overspend, also known as lift

Virtual Gift Cards

Virtual gift cards, sometimes known as digital gift cards, eGift cards, and eCertificates continue to grow in popularity. While virtual gift cards are trending upwards, they are not taking market share away from plastic gift cards. Offering the right mix of both plastic and virtual gift cards is important.

Plastic gift cards

  • 25% of consumers are purchasing more plastic gift cards than last year
  • 58% of consumers purchased the same amount of plastic as last year
  • Consumers are spending an average of $58.95 on plastic gift cards, which is up 2.3% from 2014

Virtual gift cards

  • 48% of consumers purchased the same amount of virtual gift cards as last year
  • 41% of consumers purchased more virtual gift cards than last year
  • Virtual gift card spending was $56.98, up 3.8%

Mobile Wallets and Online Shopping

Mobile wallets and online shopping continue to grow along with the desire for perks and the overall “customer experience”.  Gift cards are becoming the ideal tool for customers who desire to be incentivized, rewarded, and recognized.  64% of shoppers would prefer to receive a $10 gift card as a reward for using retailer loyalty apps and mobile wallet programs (with 16% preferring the reward in the form of a coupon).

Other Interesting Gift Card Insights

In the last three years gift card self-purchasing has more than doubled. 45% of consumers purchased gift cards for themselves in 2015.  Self-purchasing gift cards are also popular across all generations: 49% of millennials, 44% of generation x, and 42% of baby boomers all reported self-purchasing gift cards in 2015. Gift cards aren’t just for giving!

Jennifer DiPietro has been managing B2B gift card programs since 2010. A lover of social media, she has recently decided to get back into blogging as well as delve deeper into the world of marketing. Native to New England, she enjoys the beauty of the coast, but also loves the cold, snowy winters. She is obsessed with Boston sports and the Denver Broncos.

2014 Holiday Gift Card Spending to Top $31 Billion

This year holiday gift card spending on both plastic and digital gift cards will top all previous records with sales expecting to reach over $31 billion!  Gift cards have shed their reputation of being impersonal and have emerged as the perfect practical gift item for millions of holiday shoppers and are the most requested holiday gift for the 8th year in a row.

Shoppers are expected to spend an average of $47.87 a card, up 6% over last year.  Since the National Retail Federation began tracking customers holiday purchasing intentions in 2003, the total spend on gift cards has increased 83%. “Consumers young and old want to find the best way possible to create a happy holiday experience for their loved ones, and gift cards are a great option every time.”  Gift cards are a go-to gift for consumers of all ages; adults 65+ will spend the most on gift cards, while young adults will spend the least.  In addition, men will spend almost 10% more than women on gift card purchases.

The following charts provide more insight into the 2014 NRF survey results, check out more here.

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About the Survey

The NRF 2014 Gift Card Spending Survey was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the winter holidays. The survey polled 6,593 consumers and was conducted for NRF by Prosper Insights & Analytics, November 3-10, 2014. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.2 percentage points. Download complete survey results here!

Jennifer DiPietro has been managing B2B gift card programs since 2010. A lover of social media, she has recently decided to get back into blogging as well as delve deeper into the world of marketing. Native to New England, she enjoys the beauty of the coast, but also loves the cold, snowy winters. She is obsessed with Boston sports and the Denver Broncos.

eGift Cards: On the Rise, But How are They Perceived by B2B Buyers?

eGift and mobile gift cards are a popular topic as excitement grows around digital technologies. CreditCards.com reports that one half of the major gift card brands that offer eGift cards only started offering them this year. Retailers and merchants are ramping up to take advantage of growing mobile and tablet buying segments, as they are quickly becoming some of the most valuable online shoppers.

Interestingly, when GCP recently surveyed B2B gift card buyers; we found that the B2B market still prefers to purchase physical plastic cards over

do you prefer egift cards or plastic

GCP's Survey Finds Plastic Most Favorable

digital. 86.5% of B2B gift card buyers surveyed are still more comfortable with traditional plastic. We know that trophy value plays a part in the B2B buyers’ strategy, but perhaps eGift cards are still somewhat too mystical for buyers.

CreditCards.com breaks it down simply and clearly with 3 Digital Gift Card Varieties

  • Email gifting is the most widespread, accounting for about 95% of the digital gifting market, recipients receiving the gift card in their
  • Mobile gifting lets consumers use a smartphone app to send a gift card or have a gift card sent to a mobile
  • Social gifting lets consumers send gift cards via social media sites. For example, Amazon.com lets customers send friends gift cards by posting the cards on their Facebook walls. CashStar’s CEO David Stone states that “Social gifting is growing at a rate of about 400 percent”

Are you ready to buy digital or are you still a fan of plastic? Why or Why NOT? Click here for the full CreditCards.com E-gift cards take center stage story

Source: CreditCards.com

Established in 2004, GiftCard Partners is an award-winning leader and outsourced solution provider for merchant B2B gift card programs through key distribution channels.

The Sky is NOT Falling on Plastic Gift Cards

With all the hub bub about prepaid technologies like mobile wallets, mCerts and virtual gift cards, Ben Jackson from Mercator Advisory Group, offers us his calming and factual perspective in “The future form of closed-loop gift cards – Reports of plastic’s demise are greatly exaggerated”.

Ben examines 3 great lessons of history to temper the overstated destiny of plastic gift cards and advises “that new technologies do not always completely distance old ones”. The history lessons offer great perspective that “There will always be a place for plastic, but (the) day will soon arrive where virtual cards and mobile cards will be a necessary part of every issuer’s prepaid strategy. The task for issuers is to figure out what needs each form factor fills and tailor their program to make each work towards the best results”, states Jackson.

This is great advice for issuers, retailers and merchants as they look to grow their businesses with diversity versus alienating parties via the next big technology.

Source: Payments Journal, Mercator Perspectives

 

 

 

Established in 2004, GiftCard Partners is an award-winning leader and outsourced solution provider for merchant B2B gift card programs through key distribution channels.