“Money makes the world go ‘round,” or so the song goes. And we can place gift cards in that category. Described as “the new currency,” the global gift card market is exploding and projected to grow to $698 billion by 2024. And it’s evolving in response to the busy, digital-focused consumer. This means increases in mobile apps, self-gifting and loyalty programs to drive sales and bring in new customers. We look at some trends that are shaping the future of gift cards, and the tremendous opportunity for consumers and businesses.

Physical or Digital, Consumers Love Gift Cards

Gone are the days where gift cards were considered “impersonal.” According to the 2018 Consumer Insights study by First Data, the average number of physical gift cards received has increased for the 5th consecutive year. They are preferred when gifting because of their ease of use and personal feel. However, digital gift card use also is increasing because funds can be loaded instantly, and they are more convenient. Consider these statistics:

  • Consumers say that more than half of their budget (55%) will be spent on gift cards.
  • Thirty-three percent of those surveyed spend more on a gift card than a traditional gift.
  • Gift cards increase sales with $59 being the average amount overspent beyond the value of the gift card.
  • The majority of consumers (80%) overspend with a fine dining, fast casual or drug store gift card.
  • The average number of gift cards purchased by consumers is increasing – both physical (6.5 in 2017 vs. 8.0 in 2018) and digital (6.1 in 2017 vs. 6.3 in 2018).

Self-Purchasing Is on the Rise

Card buying is going beyond gifting as more consumers are purchasing gift cards for their own use (64% in 2018 vs. 58% in 2017). Consumers want to treat themselves and are using cards in place of cash or credit. Self-purchasers especially respond to loyalty, reward and discount programs.

How Will Your Business Optimize These Trends?

These trends help predict the future of gift cards and present opportunities. Opportunities that can drive more traffic and sales to your business. How are you going to optimize them and make sure your business stays top of mind?

At BirthdayPak, we know that how gift cards are packaged and marketed can make a big difference with consumers. It’s why we’re gifting experts! We partner with a handful of exclusive high-end businesses to send high-quality personalized gift cards to affluent women for their birthday. BirthdayPak recipients bring the celebrations to you and remember your business the next time they dine out or purchase a gift card. It can truly come full circle and pay dividends many times over.

To learn more about partnering with BirthdayPak, visit BirthdayPak Gifting or contact us.  If you’re an entrepreneur looking for a business opportunity with enormous potential, we invite you to view the BirthdayPak franchise markets available, peruse the wealth of information and schedule a call with us.