Just because Christmas is just around the corner, it doesn't mean that e-commerce sellers can take a break. In fact, this is the time of year when online sellers need to be working their hardest to generate revenue.
And one great way to do that is by offering giftcards. They’re a great way to bring in extra margin, and they can be shipped virtually so you don't have to worry about logistics. So if you're looking for some last-minute revenue hacks, gift cards should be at the top of your list!
But how can the humble giftcard be a last-minute revenue hack that will generate you sales even on Christmas Day? The biggest reason is that the giftcard can be virtual from beginning to end. All of a sudden, you will have very few logistic issues. You can still do sales without selling your core products, and customers can opt to have the giftcard sent straight to the recipient’s email inbox.
Take some time on a design for the “front” of the card, using either Canva or Photoshop, to add that extra “oomph” to the presentation! That way, if the buyer wishes, they can simply print out that beautiful design and present it as a gift in-person. Either way, just because there’s no product to send on your end doesn’t mean that you can’t leave an impression.
While most people decline to purchase things online in the days before Christmas, simply because they won’t make it in time with postage being as chaotic as it is, a giftcard provides a solution for you and for the seller, which is the best you can ask for as an e-commerce entrepreneur.
It also serves additional benefits to you as the seller. Just because someone receives a giftcard virtually, doesn’t mean they’re spending the money right away… or even ever! In fact, we often see that about 20% of giftcard funds never get redeemed.
So what does that mean for you? Extra margin of course! Just a little bit of extra cushion before Q1 comes around. It also means that you have two more people on your email list who are more likely to shop with you, whether it be purchasing more giftcards or redeeming them. Either way, that’s two more potential customers you can entice and convert. The ball is in your court!
Giftcards are also great because it’s empty inventory– you’re trading value instead of your core products. You can offer discounts on cards in bulk or even offer special discounts to the recipient when they redeem their gift. If you do that, remember to offer discounts on special combinations that entice the recipient to spend more than the balance on the card. Gift cards tend to make potential customers more generous with their ordering habits.
Think about it: If you had a $30 gift card to a store that you had never visited before, and the seller also offers you a 20% discount on purchases of $50 or more, or combines two products as a special offer for you for $45, you’d be more likely to take the offer than if you were purchasing it all out of your own bank account, right? $15 or $20 is perceptually much less in the mind of a buyer when the value is higher.
The last thing we want you to consider about giftcards is local laws, regulations, and e-commerce limitations. Check and make sure there aren’t any specific rules applying to e-commerce gift cards, and make sure you set a reasonable expiration date (we suggest 2 years). We also advise that a lot of e-commerce systems do not support giftcards, so make it easy on yourself if your system does not have that capability and tell your customers that they need to email your support line to activate the gift card. When they email you, email them back with the unique code (which you should be able to set up on the backend of your site). Don't forget to make this code unique and only working for a specific customer one time.
So there you have it. Maybe you’ve already been thinking about how to implement giftcards in your business, or maybe you were skeptical before reading this.Giftcards don’t have to be a dull offering, and instead, can solve a real problem for you and the buyer, and provide some value to the recipient. It gives you much more flexibility in your offerings and only helps to build your following. The bottom line is that it’s all up to you and helps you to control your offerings, preserve your sanity AND your holidays!