Gift Cards: Upsell Mini Billboards
May 11, 2012 at 10:23 AM
Gone are the days of the handwritten gift certificate. This antiquated form of offering customers a way to gift products and services has been replaced by plastic gift cards. Integrated into the same terminal that is used for credit card processing, gift cards offer a sleeker and more versatile option.
Merchants are wise to introduce gift cards into their inventory for two very important reasons: 1) A large percentage of these cards are never redeemed and 2) the cards act as a small marketing tool that requires little investment.
The majority of gift cards are lost or never redeemed by the recipient. This means that the business has received payment for products and services that may never have to be delivered upon. Longer expiration dates, due to new legislation, aid cardholders in redeeming in the long run.
However, for the cardholders that do use the gift card, the products and services given to them via payment on the card aid the merchant outside of standard marketing tactics. Every time the cardholder opens their wallet, they are carrying a "mini billboard" for the merchant. If the gift card has custom artwork, it can draw the eyes of others around the cardholder. If the artwork, products, and services coincide for a great shopping experience, the cardholder may even actively take out the gift card to show friends or family. Word of mouth supplemented by a tool that can be held can increase business.
The cost of the cards are essentially minimal compared to the return. While gift cards do require more upfront capitol, they can be paid for by cash advances or included in leases. MPI encourages its agents to try to include gift cards when a merchant asks for a cash advance or lease. It increases commission and merchant retention. Also, if an account has enough profit, it offers a chance to pay for the artwork for the card or discount the retail cost of the cards. This allows the merchant to see that you value them as a customer and are willing to help.
Learn more about MP’s gift card solution at http://www.mpiprocessing.com/our-services/gift-and-loyalty-cards/ .