It’s that time of year again, the Holiday Season. The season of Giving! In the spirit of Giving, we’d like to take the time to discuss Gift Cards & Loyalty Cards. Gift Cards and Loyalty cards are a great way to show your existing customers that you appreciate them. That is why SecureGlobalPay makes it easy for your small business to accept gift and loyalty cards. When you sign up for these programs we can help you to not only accept gift and loyalty cards, but track and manage all gift certificate and loyalty card purchases. With the proper tools in place, you can easily track your customers spending habits while also giving back to show how much you appreciate their loyalty.
What is the Difference?
When we refer to a tangible gift card or a tangible loyalty card, we are referring to something very similar. With both card programs, you will receive an actual physical plastic card. In fact, the only difference between a gift and loyalty card is the way in which the cards are issued.
A gift card is typically used by your loyal customers on special occasions including holidays, birthdays and anniversaries. Your customers will typically request a set amount to be added to the gift card. The customer will then pay the business in advance via cash, check or credit/debit card depending on what type of payment the merchant accepts.
When a gift card is given as a gift, the gift card holder may then come to your business and use those funds on the card to purchase your products. It is a popular gift giving option that can be used when your customers are not sure what to purchase for their loved ones. Instead of handing cash to loved ones, your customers can give their friends and family a personalized gift card.
Loyalty cards are slightly different than gift cards. They generally have a set amount on the card that is predetermined by you, the small business owner. The cards can be re-used when the amount on the card has been reached. They are typically set up to be used with your small business incentive programs. When your customers use their loyalty cards, they typically receive rewards and discounts to continue encouraging your customers to shop with you.
What are the Benefits of a Gift Card and Loyalty Program?
There are significant benefits to establishing a Gift Card or Loyalty program for your business.
Get New Customers – Gift cards are a great way to give your satisfied customers the opportunity to share your products with their friends and families. When they present a gift card from your business to their friends and loved ones, they are doing most of the work for you in bringing new customers to your door.
A Great Way to Market Your Brand – Most gift and loyalty cards can be customized to include your small business logo and some artwork. Every time your customer opens their wallet they are looking directly at your logo, helping to further brand recognition.
Reward Loyal Customers – Loyal customers love to feel appreciated. So why not give something back to them by using loyalty cards? With the promise of discounts and special pricing, your customers won’t want to go anywhere else.
Reusable – The best part about gift and loyalty cards are that they can be reused repeatedly to reward all your new and your old customers.
Branded or Unbranded?
When signing up for gift and loyalty cards, you will be presented with many different options that may work for your business. One of the first questions you may be asked, depending on what type of business you have and your specific needs, is whether you are looking to create cards that are branded or unbranded.
A branded card will look very similar to a regular credit card and also have your specific business name, logo and artwork as well. A typical branded card has the logo of one of the major credit card brands such as Visa, MasterCard, Discover Card or American Express in the corner of the card.
We recommend that most small businesses only consider the branded card if it fits their specific needs and business model. You will be able to create a gift or loyalty card using your small business logo on the actual card. Branded gift cards generally have restrictions that limit where the amount on the card can be spent. Most likely, the amount may only be spent at the store specified by the logo listed on the card.
Unbranded cards are great in that you may not want to associate the card with the card brands such as MasterCard, Visa, Discover and American Express on the gift card. If you are looking for a generic type of card to be used for your business, then you will want to specify that you are looking for “unbranded cards.” While not every business will accept gift cards, unbranded cards gives some flexibility to your customers to use the card at the business of their choice (which may happen not to be your business).
SecureGlobalPay’s Gift and Loyalty Programs
It is much harder to keep a customer than to find a new one. That is why offering easy to use Gift Cards with a back end tracking system can help your customers and their friends to enjoy your products. The added benefit is that on average, returning customers spend more than first-time customers and consumers who redeem gift cards spend more than the total amount on the gift card! You will also be able to take advantage of increased float between the time of the card sale and card redemption.
How to Track your Gift Cards
Tracking your Gift Card sales are as easy as checking your email. SecureGlobalPay offers a daily batch report of all transactions, monthly corporate summary statements, and a report of all transactions monitored by location. It will also include all fees. We can send the reports electronically, by fax or in print.
Sign up today and also receive:
Free Setup and Consultation
Free Starter Packet with 50 gift cards
Free 30-day trial period
SecureGlobalPay offers the best in loyalty card programs. When you sign up, our rewards system will provide reports of loyalty points earned through purchases as well as a summary of redemption, transactions voided, balance inquiries and other loyalty program activities.
Our loyalty cards offer complete transaction reporting and lets you see the true contribution of gift and loyalty cards to your bottom line.
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