Gift cards are a type of store currency that hold a certain amount of money for the customer to use. They’re often not the main source of revenue for businesses, but they have a lot of potential to increase total sales and profits. Therefore, all businesses must know these effective gift card marketing strategies. Using any of these strategies will increase your gift card sales, which in turn will boost customer loyalty and uphold your business’s success.
One of the simplest ways to increase gift card sales is to increase their in-store visibility. You can set them up anywhere around your business, but displaying them in high-traffic areas is best. In retail stores, this is usually at the sales counter; in restaurants and hotels, this is at the front of the house. Just be sure to display them properly to increase their sales. Use a gift card rack or shelf for better visual appeal. Additionally, you can sell them in card sleeves, boxes, or other creative holders so that they stand out and catch eyes.
Market Them Across Different Channels
Another great marketing strategy is to market the gift cards across all possible channels. In-store marketing will increase sales from in-person customers, but you should branch out to web and social media sales as well. When you track these platforms, you’ll see the areas in which you can improve your sales the most.
Proper displays are just one part of in-store marketing. Another part is to make sure your employees proactively sell them. Many businesses take a passive approach to gift card selling, selling them only at customer request. This is a good strategy, but it neglects the possible sales that may result from an active marketing approach. Employees should actively promote gift cards at checkout as add-ons to other items. This will naturally increase any lagging gift card sales in your business.
On the Website
Selling on your website will also increase these sales. From here, you can digitally upsell gift cards and increase customer awareness of them. Large, eye-catching banners are great ways to attract visitors. You can also include a permanent footer on your site to encourage the purchase of digital or physical gift cards.
E-mail and Social Media
Similar to e-commerce, e-mail and social media platforms are another great way to market gift cards. E-mail newsletters and promotions are perfect mediums to advertise the cards. Not to mention, social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter allow you to promote content to lots of people. With these posts, you can cross-sell the gift cards with other items. Better yet, during the holiday season, you can take advantage of people who forgot to buy presents. Gift cards are great gift alternatives at any time of the year, and you can show your customers this via your social media accounts.
Create a Shopping Guide or Catalog
A shopping guide or catalog will show customers all the possible items they could buy with their gift cards. A catalog will show off your store’s items and prices to give customers a sense of what they desire. This can also highlight certain products, show off new items, give a behind-the-scenes look, or showcase upcoming events at your business. You can also embed your social media tags for customers to follow and keep up with the latest business news.
Cross-Sell and Upsell
Cross-selling is the practice of selling additional products or services to customers, while upselling is the practice of introducing customers to add-ons or upgrades on top of their initial purchases. Both tactics will greatly improve sales and profits. Once employees take an active marketing approach to gift card sales, they can upsell them during final purchases and checkout. Additionally, you can utilize your e-commerce site to promote gift cards on the final checkout screens. Another possibility is setting up your site to prompt a pop-up banner for gift cards when a customer clicks on one item. No matter what, these tactics will surely increase your sales numbers and net profits.
The “treat yourself” mentality is quite popular today. Many customers want to spend their money on themselves rather than on others. Gift cards are easy gift-giving options, so take advantage of this self-spending trend. When you see any indecisive or inconclusive customers, offer them the option of buying a gift card. When you highlight this choice, you’ll increase the chance that the customer will make a final purchase—even if it’s just a gift card. This is ideal because an overwhelmed customer likely won’t make a purchase at all, which is a lost sale opportunity. Selling gift cards is better than selling nothing at all.
Promote a Loyalty Program
Every business’s goal is to retain existing customers and attract new ones. Therefore, customer loyalty is extremely important. One of the best advantages of gift cards is that their worth is completely customizable. This means you can give away low-value cards of $5 to $10 dollars as incentives to customers who spend over a certain amount. Customers will see this as a token of appreciation for their loyalty, and it will incentivize them to return. From there, you can incorporate cross-selling or upselling techniques to raise the total sales price; then, after the customer spends a certain amount, you can reward them with another gift card. You’ll notice a pattern that not only retains loyal customers but also pushes for higher net profits for your business.
Utilize Holiday Spending
You can’t talk about gift cards without their seasonal popularity. It’s common knowledge that gift cards are some of the biggest holiday gifts for any time of year. Some of the most common occasions to account for include Christmas and Hanukkah, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, birthdays, anniversaries, graduation ceremonies, baby showers, and other special events. These events occur throughout the year, meaning you can always find an event to optimize for gift card sales.
Lastly, a creative way to sell gift cards is to customize them. Many retailers leave their gift cards blank or put their store logo on them. However, you can customize the cards to feature different images or other illustrations to set your cards apart. This can be graphics that match holidays or special events or even silly graphics that add a creative flair. No matter what, this will visually attract customers.
Whichever gift card strategies you implement, remember that our retail accounting software has full payment integration for you to use with loyalty programs and gift cards. This software creates custom gift cards and grants you full control over any unused balances and reuploading depleted cards at no additional cost.