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Attract New Customers to Your Store with Gift Cards

Posted by Sureswipe on 25 September 2017

The Benefits of Running Your Own Gift Card Programme

Did you know that 18% of festive season retail spend is now generated through gift card transactions? A Gift Card Programme can help you unlock an untapped revenue stream this holiday season – and usher in a flow of new customers.   

According to Deloitte, diminishing disposable incomes caused by a lacklustre economy is driving South Africans to be more rational when gifting over the festive period. Today’s consumers are adopting a more practical outlook towards gifting and gift cards are growing in popularity as more and more retailers leverage them to grow revenue.

Expert insights on SA gift card trends

  • According to research conducted by Deloitte, in their annual Holiday Survey, demand for gift cards is growing steadily. While consumers are reducing spend on certain categories of non-essential items such as holidays, entertainment and gift-giving – they tend to allocate a larger proportion of their budgets to necessities such as groceries, energy, education, healthcare and housing. “Instead of paying for expensive items such as gifts, they’ll prefer to choose giving a gift card instead,” says Deloitte.
  • This trend toward cost-effective gifting is expected to gain momentum. Deloitte attributes this conservative approach to holiday spending to the unsteady South African economy. Instead of wasting money on an expensive gift for a loved one, consumers are showing that they prefer to give a gift card so the recipient can choose the item they really want.


Leverage the ‘lipstick effect’

  • Estee Lauder’s chairperson, Leonard Lauder coined the phrase the ‘lipstick effect’ – a phenomenon that sees a positive spike in sales of affordable luxury goods during tough economic cycles – as consumers re-direct their spending from large luxury items to smaller pleasures.
  • Deloitte explains that during the festive period, chocolates, cosmetics, perfumes and gift vouchers will be desired gifts, as pressure on disposable incomes rise. It’s therefore an ideal opportunity for you to launch a gift card programme.


“Over the last five years, SA respondents leading up to the festive season have indicated that cash has been the most desired gift, followed by gift vouchers and cards, chocolates, clothes and shoes – for both men and women.”

– Deloitte



Gift cards are not only
for big retailers


  • Consumer goods store gift cards are a definite favourite amongst shoppers, as Deloitte notes, because giving a gift card is a smart way for people to avoid giving duplicate gifts.
  • Local statistics gathered by Sureswipe show that retailers are seeing the benefit of implementing a Gift Card Programme.
  • Not only do recipients of the gift cards spend between 20% and 50% more on their purchases, but some even opt to reuse their cards, re-charging them with more credit to shop some more.
  • Using Sureswipe’s Gift Card solution means you’ll also gain access to an online data capture system that makes generating reports simple. You can also send SMS and email marketing alerts to customers on your gift card database from this online portal to keep marketing costs at bay.



Make your cards sought-after. Starbucks famously released 5000 limited edition gift cards in the USA made from stainless steel, costing USD450 (R5000) each, loaded with USD400 in credit. The cards sold out in six minutes, generating USD2.25-million worth of gift card sales in 360 seconds.




According to Investopedia, gifts cards are proven to attract new customers and can help independent retailers like you to grow your revenue in new ways:


  1. More and more South Africans are increasing spend on gift cards.
    Sureswipe’s research on gift card usage shows that 18% of the money that’s spent in retail environments during the festive period comes in the form of gift card swipes.
  1. Sell more full-price items.
    Investopedia adds that consumers using gift cards are 2.5 times more likely to pay full price for products. Also, where new shoppers might hesitate before coming to your store to spend on a cash purchase, they often won't think twice when using a gift card. Retail experts say that consumers with gift cards are less likely to hunt for bargains or wait until items go on sale to spend.
  1. Make more than the card value.
    Did you know that approximately 80% of all gift-card-shoppers spend more than the face-value of the gift card? Research by Sureswipe shows that consumers who go to a particular shop with a gift card can end up spending 20% more on their purchases.
  2. Foster loyalty and increased spend.
    A percentage of your consumers will also opt to reuse their gift cards – recharging them with more credit to use for future purchases.



How to set-up your own Gift
Card Programmes


  • Think of gift cards as valuable, low-hanging fruit that’s ripe for the picking. A Gift Card Programme can help you attract new shoppers, ramp up sales, encourage repeat visits and ultimately add a solid boost to your turnover.
  • For a low monthly fee, we’ll provide you with a gift card pack starter bundle and we’ll help you launch and manage your own unique gift card programme – including design and provisioning of cards as well as point-of-sale merchandising to promote your gift card programme.


Signing up is straightforward and we will help you to set-up your gift card programme instantly. We’ll also custom-brand your gift cards and provide you with the promotional material you need to endorse your programme. All the supporting tools you need to manage your gift card programme are available online and you’ll receive training to use the platform correctly.



Step 1: If you already have a Sureswipe card payment solution, we can quickly help you kick-start your Gift Programme.

Step 2: You simply contact Sureswipe and speak to one of our solutions consultants for more information on our Gift Cards for your particular business needs.

Step 3: Once you’ve signed up for Gift Cards, you simply send us your logo or preferred artwork and we’ll design your cards. You’ll get to approve the cards to ensure they align with your brand identity.

Step 4: Sureswipe will send your approved designs for card printing which should take around 7 – 10 days for production.

Step 5: We get in touch with you to arrange delivery of your new Gift Cards and to provide training on how to load credits on them via your Sureswipe card payment device.

Step 6: You’re ready to plan your Gift Card launch party and promote your unique offering to customers.

Click here to create your own unique Gift Cards and start generating more revenue today.

Topics: Leveraging Gift & Loyalty Programmes

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