What are the best gift cards to give for Christmas?

3 min read
3 min read

What are the best gift cards to give for Christmas?

We’ve compiled statistics and surveys from the public to see which are the most popular gift cards for the holiday season and why.

Let’s take a deep dive into the best gift cards to get someone for Christmas.

The popularity of gift cards at Christmas

It is expected by the National Retail Federation that $27.5 Billion will be spent on gift cards this year in their NFR 2020 consumer holiday survey. 

They also concluded from the survey that consumers will purchase 3 gift cards on average, and spend an average price of around $50 per gift card.

So why are gift cards so popular at Christmas? 

NFR insights found that the most popular gift that consumers want to receive this holiday season is gift cards.

54% of people preferred to receive gift cards and gift certificates as their holiday gift. This is higher than all other types of gifts. Clothing is the close second preferred gift with 47% of people.

Image from NRF insights

Online shopping is also expected to grow this Christmas.

With the threat of Coronavirus still looming we predict online shopping for the holidays to rise substantially.

Around 60% of consumers plan to purchase online this Christmas.

And around 70% of consumers plan to make purchases on their mobile too. This makes it ideal for businesses with an online gift card store.

Who are gift cards popular with?

67% of women wish for gift cards at Christmas compared with 50% of men. 

 What are the best gift cards to get someone? 

While both men and women desire to receive gift cards at Christmas, 38% of these said they would love to receive an experience gift card over a monetary value.

This is reflected in another NRF 2020 consumer holiday survey, As you can see from the graph the most popular type of gift card people plan to purchase is restaurant gift cards.

Image from NRF insights

We also found that 45% of women also desire weekend breaks as a Christmas gift.

Experiences are favoured over physical gifts! 

The statistics above demonstrate a true shift in the consumer spending habit in embracing the experience economy. 

We have found through our gift card sales that our experience gift cards sell way better than monetary value gift cards, with experience cards sales increasing year on year.

We believe this to be down to:

  1. Fear of missing out (FOMO).
  2. Families wanting to spend quality time together and making memories.
  3. Participating in experiences that align with one's identity.
  4. People want to share unique experiences on social media.

How to create experiences that deliver lasting memories?

  1. Think of unique experiences- moments of evolution
  2. Create opportunities to personalise (statistic)
  3. Create experiences where the whole family is engaged
  4. Create opportunities for extra perceived value

1.   Experiences

People are desiring unique experiences more and more. These can be looked at as giving your customers the opportunity to experience a moment of elevation. These are experiences that rise above our routine. We chase these experiences as they promote feelings of joy, amazement, motivation and make us feel engaged.

Think outside the box when creating your experiences. Can you partner with other local enterprises?

What little quirks can you add to your normal services to elevate them and make them memorable?

Some ideas for inspiration can be found in our blog post: What makes a good dining experience? 

Unique experiences are often popular on social media. These get posters their ‘likes’ that reaffirms what a great experience they had. The additional benefit of sharing experiences on social media is that it will convince others to participate in your experiences too.

To really promote social sharing, have your marketing team create a fun hashtag that can be associated with the experience.

This will also tap into the dreaded FOMO people experience.

2.   Personalisation

Personalised gifts are a huge market, with the global figures expected to rise to $38 Billion by 2021. 

One of our favoured features on our gift card system is the ability for all customers to customize and personalise gift experiences.

We achieve this through a little feature called ‘add-ons’.

Our add-ons are quite simple, a drop-down choice menu of additional extras appears next to gift experiences when shoppers are choosing their gift card.

A quick example which demonstrates add-ons easily is an overnight stay at a hotel. The add-on extras for the overnight gift card experience can include a bottle of wine, chocolates on arrival or even rose petals on the bed.

Our figures show that our clients who use add-ons generate an extra 10% sales.

It’s a win-win situation.

You can also enhance your services by adding opportunities for people to identify with the experience. Coffee, Gin, vegan or big steaks- these are very common food identities that people will proudly associate themselves with! A great example of a restaurant catering to these identities can be found in a past blog post of ours on the Park Plaza. The hotel nails creating experiences that cater to people's identities. 

3.   Engage the whole family

Have a variety of experiences available, but try to include a ‘family participation’ experience too. This in a simple form can be through dining. But thinking outside the box to create unique experiences that include all the family takes something special.

Activities such as miniature golf, escape rooms and petting farms are great activities that promote families spending time together and creating memories. What can you introduce into your services?

4.   Create a feeling of value!

For shoppers to really desire to buy your gifts this Christmas ensure you create package experiences where there is a perceived value for money.

Whether this is combining different experiences together to create a super package deal or even quite simply having a limited time on exclusive experiences. People like to feel they are getting something more out of their purchases, which leaves them feeling more satisfied and more likely to purchase again.

If you’re selling gift cards for Christmas this year we very much recommend that you check out our post on how to promote your gift cards on social media. It can go a long way to reaching a wider audience and increasing your sales.

What are the best gift cards to give for Christmas?

We hope you’ve enjoyed our post on the best gift cards to give for Christmas. Stay tuned as next month we’ll be talking about Christmas promotion ideas!

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