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Make the most of the gift cards you sell…

PrintWith holiday shopping now in full swing, you’re probably not thinking, “What about January?” But you should be, and what you do now can make a big difference in your current holiday sales – and beyond.

Right now, your store or restaurant is likely in the midst of its strongest sales season of the year. And while some of that entails selling your products to your customers now, there’s a good chance that if you sell gift certificates or gift cards, that many of your customers are stocking up on those, as well. After all, gift cards have been the most requested item on holiday wish lists since 2007.

So why is it important to offer these to your customers, and how can you make the most of their visit to your store this month to improve your sales in the new year?

Gift Cards: The Facts
People love gift certificates, and they love gift cards even more. Switching from paper gift certificates to plastic gift cards can bump sales 50-100%. And gift cards made up 18% of all holiday gift purchases in 2011.

And for small businesses, gift cards can be a win-win. More than 60% of gift card recipients spend more than the amount of their gift card. 75% of them spend 60% or more over the value of their card. That’s the gift (card) that keeps giving for retailers.

The other 40% or so? They don’t use the total value of the card, moving that unused value to your bottom line.

Gift Cards: Preparing for Dec. 26 and Beyond
In addition to just SELLING gift cards, you can be using this high-traffic time to build toward your post-holiday marketing efforts.

Work now on building your customer list, particularly email addresses, so you can send them post-holiday sale information and encourage them to come in and redeem their gift. Consider a program now where you provide a small gift card to the purchaser for each gift card bought (say, “Free $10 gift card with purchase of $75 or more in gift cards.”) Now you have two customers to come back after the holidays.

After all, if 60% of those gift card recipients are going to spend MORE than the card value, there are more sales to be made.

And 55% percent of gift card recipients will visit your location more than once to spend the balance of their card. Multiple visits provide you extra opportunities to market your products and services to those gift card holders.

Gift Cards: If Not Now, When?
And don’t worry. Even if you’re not selling gift cards or gift certificates, it’s not too late to begin. After all, 81% of consumers purchase gift cards for birthdays (67% of customers buy them for other holidays, as well). So if you’ve missed this holiday season, don’t fret. It’s never too late to start.

Need Assistance?
We’d be happy to help you with your gift card campaign, or your marketing plan for the New Year. Fill out the form below to request information. Or stop by 1KMarketingMakeover.com to see how we can help you make the most of your marketing in 2014. (Mention this article in your 1K Marketing Makeover sign-up form and get 20% off your plan! Hurry! Offer ends 12/25/2013.)

 

Sources:
http://www.card9.com/giftcard-statistics.asp
http://grifinancial.com/id154.html
http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/morning_call/2011/12/unused-gift-card-total-41-billion.html
http://www.giftcardexchangeday.com/statistics.php
http://blogs.wsj.com/totalreturn/2012/08/16/should-states-be-able-to-seize-gift-cards
http://www.giftcardpartners.com/Q4GiftCardIndustryTrendReport.htm

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