After a surge in digital and E-gift card sales during the holidays at the end of last year, consumer buying patterns continue to settle on new options. Electronic gift cards meet the demands of consumers and retailers.
According to the Blackhawk Network, BrandedPay Post-Holiday Report on consumer spending, digital gift card sales increased by more than 80%. According to this study, e-commerce gift card sales also increased by nearly 40% during the holiday season.
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The report’s findings indicate that consumer preferences continue to shift away from in-store shopping when suitable alternatives are available. E-commerce businesses considering how to capitalize on the digital momentum in 2021 can benefit from a new shopping trend.
Gift card programs are no exception to the rapid digitization of consumer behavior. According to Theresa McEndree, global head of marketing and corporate branding at Blackhawk Network, this is a huge win for retailers because gift card recipients are ready and excited to use them. .
The best discoveries and patterns
The division of online shopping and computerized gift cards flooded in when surveyed shoppers revealed in a report that 68% of their holiday shoppers shop online overall. That was more than the expected 60% of surveyed consumers reported before the holiday season. .
Most of these customers said they intend to use the Online gift cards within the next month. Another 23% said they intend to use the gift cards by the first half of the year.
The average amount spent on gift cards was about $45. Blackhawk researchers predicted that this is good news for US retailers, as six in ten customers surveyed also said they intend to spend more than the value of the gift card.
New Uses Customers are taking advantage of this e-gifting trend in new ways. In addition to supporting local businesses, they are much more likely to buy a digital gift for themselves.
According to Nikki Baird, vice president of retail innovation at retail business solutions provider Aptos, “Remember that many people buy gift cards not as gifts, but as an investment in retailers to support their business.” Nikki Baird made this statement to the E-Commerce Times.
Without requiring the store owner to do anything, it’s a great way to show support and faith in the retailer’s future. There is no need to search for supplies, man a store, or buy food and ingredients for a restaurant.
Baird explained that the stigma of the gift card being impersonal has been greatly reduced and that the convenience factor is extremely high. Sending a gift card doesn’t feel as impersonal as it used to when you could only see each other through video chats.
I believe the reluctance towards gift cards will not return. She added: “The convenience of shopping, gifting and cashing out is simply too high for customers to stop this practice.”
Expanded Convenience Driving Adoption
Convenience drives adoption Convenience has been a major factor in the shift in consumer preference for gift cards and the growing number of families now living split lives. The electronic donation process is more appealing to customers in both of these scenarios.
Baird explained that while online shopping made it easier to send actual gifts, there was still a problem if the recipient needed to exchange them.
“Digital gifts are also a popular option for last-minute shoppers because there’s no need to wrap or ship them.”
Old Trend, New Appeal
For years, the National Retail Federation has documented that gift cards are the most sought-after holiday gift. According to Brophy, they quickly rose to the top of customers’ wish lists for gifts.
Postage has become more expensive during the pandemic. In addition, the delivery time has increased and there is little or no warranty service. She added that digital gift cards are a reliable way to ensure that gifts arrive on time and without problems.
People’s eagerness for personal contact may lead to an increase in traditional gift-giving after the pandemic. However, Brophy predicts that digital gift cards will continue to be a popular gifting option in the long term due to their ease of use and adaptability for both parties.