In 2015, the National Retail Federation estimated that consumers would purchase $25 billion in gift cards during the holiday season. Companies like Best Buy and Victoria's Secret have even seen upwards of $40 million each in profits from unused gift cards alone.
Gift cards have become an extremely popular gift for the holidays, birthdays, and showers. Some couples register for very few items hoping to get gift cards so they can get gifts on their own terms. Gift cards are a thoughtful purchase because they let your loved one know that you were thinking of them and it gives them the freedom to choose their own items. Gift cards to specialty stores, spas, or other niche stores can speak volumes about how you were thinking of that individual when selecting a store.
To get in on the gift card action, you should make it very easy to purchase them. Place a sign advertising that gift certificates are available. We recommend not only putting one at the counter, but also placing one at the entrance to the store, so that weary buyers know right away that they have an alternative gift idea.
If your store has a website, advertise that gift certificates are available. We like gift certificates that can be customized to any amount. That way, people aren't pigeonholed into a certain price. If you have only increments of $25, someone planning to spend $30 will go down to $25 rather than going up to $50. Most organizations do not count a gift certificate as revenue until it is redeemed, but after two years, that certificate is automatically figured into profits.
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