For all the talk that retailers do about “preparing for the holiday season”, when it comes down to who’s raking in the revenue, it’s often the advertising platforms and marketing agencies who are getting ahead. During the holidays, retailers are ready to try every marketing method under the sun: emails, SEO, content marketing, re-marketing, and cart recovery programs… just to name a few.
If you’re an ecommerce owner, the one thing we can guarantee is that you’ll get exhausted long before you’ve exhausted the long list of marketing possibilities. But one underused marketing technique that’s likely hiding right under your nose (and has shown positive results time and time again) is gift cards.
Yes, you read that right—gift cards are a marketing tool.
To see the real opportunity of gift cards you need to realize that they aren’t just another product on your website and understand that when used properly, they can be a powerful marketing tool in their own right. You just need to know how to use them, and by the end of this article that’s exactly what you’ll be able to do.
Let’s Cut to the Chase Customers Love Gift Cards
Before we get to the ways gift cards can increase your customer base, it’s worth mentioning that if you don’t offer them for your store already, you’re almost certainly missing an opportunity to grow your customer base.
The reality is, customers want gift cards…why?
- They Want to Choose Their Own Gift: In a 2015 survey from The National Retail Federation, the organization found “nearly 6 in 10 (58.8%) customers who classified themselves as “celebrating the holidays” said that they would like to receive gift cards which gives them an opportunity to choose their own gift.
- They Want to Buy the Perfect Effortless Gift : From the same survey, 3 out of 4 of people said they were planning on buying gift cards for at least one person that year, which requires less effort and enables the recipient to choose the gift of their choice. In fact, the average consumer said they were planning on buying more than 3 cards and would be spending an average of $153.08 in total on the product.
In a separate piece of research done by CEB Global, they found that gift card sales in the U.S. alone reached an estimated $160 billion in 2018.
And the demand for gift cards spikes around one particular time of year… the holidays, just look at Google Trends:
If you don’t have gift cards available for your ecommerce store, you are missing out on significant market demand and a tremendous opportunity.
Gift Cards are an Ideal Gift… If You Make Them Personal
Okay, so we know that gift cards are worth it but once you’ve created them what comes next? Simple, you need to present them on-site as the ideal gift they are, something that’s personal and always appreciated by the recipient. After all, if you gift your loved one with a specific item, he or she will know you put thought into it, but they may not always like the gift.
How to do it
One of the best ways to get your customers excited about your gift cards is to offer and emphasize personalization. Consumers generally appreciate personalization and Marketing Charts’ Survey showed that 1 in every 2 shoppers believe that retailers who offered personalized shopping experiences delivered a more valuable service.
Yes, your gift card is already ‘personal’ because it comes from your unique store, with your unique brand, culture, and products but you should look for opportunities to make it an even more personal experience for your customers and their recipients.
Speaking of Gift Cards…Now Available on Amazon.ae
If you’re looking for some inspiration on how to do gift cards the right way, look no further than our parent company Amazon. Amazon.ae has recently rolled out a range of different gift card options for consumers across the UAE just in time for the holiday season. The cards are available in a few different flavors, but all give the recipients access to the same great ecommerce ecosystem.
Brick and Mortar Cards
Customers can purchase Amazon.ae gift cards from physical locations of partner stores; Carrefour, Sharaf DG, upay, zoom or aswaaq. The receiver can apply the gift card to their Amazon account and use the balance to purchase on Amazon.ae or enter claim code during checkout on amazon.ae. Amazon.ae Gift Cards are available in AED 50, AED 100, AED 250 and AED 500 denominations at participating stores throughout the UAE.
E Gift Cards
Customers can also choose gift cards in a range of denominations and email a digital copy of the gift card directly to receiver with their personalized message. They can even choose to add a personalized photo. The receiver can apply the gift card to their Amazon account and use the balance to purchase on Amazon.ae or enter a claim code during checkout on amazon.ae
Gift Cards are More Than a Product: They’re a Powerful Marketing Tool
The marketing power of gift cards is a great way to not only increase your customer base and profits, but also empower ‘Givers’ to introduce your store to new customers they care about. Personalization can create positive experiences that your recipients want to repeat and share with their circles.
You just need to know how and now you do… Go harness the marketing power of your gift cards this holiday season.
If Gifting is an Art, Amazon Gift Cards are the start…
Click to here to find out more about amazon.ae Gift Cards just in time for the holiday season.