As the fall colors descend onto many of us, thoughts start to turn towards cooler nights and the exciting holiday shopping season. Relying on your brand presence as it stands has yielded many successful seasons in recent years. However, times do change and this season’s holiday shopper has developed a new sense of safety given the events of the past year.
The uncertainty of what this means for this holiday shopping season has added complexity to holiday promotions. But, while the holiday game may look different this year, some adjustments can smooth the transition. Developing a retail gift cards POS strategy is a great example of how you can blend the in-person holiday shopping season with the practicality and safety that customers will seek out this year. There are several avenues available to you to simplify how you use holiday promotions this season, including the helping hand that innovative POS technology has to offer.
Selling Gift Cards Today Means Modernizing Your Technology
Adding gift cards to your holiday promotion repertoire will require that you have the appropriate technical tools to manage them. Cutting-edge, affordable POS technology will provide you with additional options beyond the printing of gift card certificates or the distribution of single-use plastic cards. Modern POS software will give you the ability to:
- Accurately track gift card balances
- Detect fraud
- Enjoy the benefits of a marketing platform
Leveraging the versatility of POS technology in the distribution and management of digital and re-loadable gift cards introduces some exciting new twists into your business strategy. Data can be harnessed to yield valuable data-based insights, such as the days of the week gift cards are most likely to be sold or redeemed, and for what products. These new data points can help you to confidently modify your business strategy to meet new, emerging, trends.
How Can an Advanced POS Platform Make Gift Cards Easier on Holiday Budgets?
A big cause of the holiday shopping blues revolves around fitting gift purchases into already strained household budgets. The no-hassle approach that gift cards offer your regular customers can work to alleviate their budgetary concerns, while presenting you with a predictable holiday revenue stream. Purchasing a gift card does not involve any sales taxes in most cases, making your customer’s purchase a known-quantity and their budgetary impact easy to calculate.
Here’s how this could look: Customer “A” has a holiday budget of $250. This customer has 5 more people to shop for, and from what your customer tells you, each would enjoy specific items in your store. Two of the people are out of town, but the other three are in town and sound likely to become return customers. You recommend that the customer purchase two $50 eGift cards to be redeemed on your website, and three re-loadable $50 gift cards for those in town.
In the above scenario, you have helped your customer satisfy the remainder of their shopping list, and on budget, and also without incurring any shipping or delivery charges. The two people receiving the eGift cards may develop into regular online customers, thanks to your POS-powered multichannel presence, while the other three gift card recipients have multiple incentives for becoming new loyal customers to your business.
Finding New Loyal Customers Through Gift Card Redemption
Gift cards do more than helping your customers find timely gifts within any budget. They give you an open door into the minds of new potential customers. As illustrated above, the great thing about utilizing eGift cards as well as traditional gift cards are their ability to show off both your multichannel and physical presences to a broader audience. This proves to be a boost to your bottom line, as shoppers using gift cards typically spend more, and are more likely to return.
Gift cards can also pull double duty as loyalty cards in a bid to promote your business to potential new audiences. This presents you with additional options to retain new customers long after the Christmas promotional season has ended. Gift cards are reloaded to help shoppers stay within the confines of their budgets, and can act as loyalty cards for personalized deals and savings opportunities. This builds long-lasting customer relationships, and gives you the data you need to evolve alongside your customer’s changing expectations.
Lower Your Costs through Reduced Returns and Exchanges
We have been very focused on how gift cards can be utilized as an important holiday tool from the customer’s perspective, so let’s shift gears here a bit to look at some of your holiday pain points. Too often, as the crowds of shoppers fades away on December 26th, the crowds of those seeking to make gift returns or exchanges surges to take their place. This is an important, revenue- and time-saving area where gift cards can have an immediate positive impact.
The cost savings that come from experiencing dramatically slower rates of exchanges or returns are further reinforced by having impactful POS technology at the ready. Items are efficiently tracked when re-entering into your inventory system, which limits the cases of accidental and purposeful product leakage rates. Your POS system knows the exact price at the moment of sale, ensuring that refunds are accurately issued.
Maximize the Impact of Retail Gift Cards POS Innovations
Designing holiday promotions may have met its most challenging year ever. With businesses under a wide variety of operating limitations, as well as competing for budget-conscious customers, it’s imperative to find alternate gifting solutions. Leveraging modern POS technology with traditional gift cards opens the doors of possibility to a wider spectrum of gift card offerings that are sure to strike a chord with your customers.
Determining what your gift card strategy should be, as well as making the determination of if your POS solution can effectively manage it all, is where a top POS solution provider like talech can help. We will ensure that the POS technology you rely on offers gift card solutions, including eGift and re-loadable cards, that meet the needs of all of your customers, while presenting an attractive model of your business to potential new customers. Contact us to find out more about leveraging POS for your business.