Businesse-Commerce

10 Characteristics of a Good Gift Card and Voucher Management System

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If you want to own the best gift card or gift voucher management system then you will need to understand the dynamics involved in having one. It is important to familiarize yourself with the rudiments of a gift card management system which includes a personalization, digitization and automation. 

This article covers a list of must-have features your card management system ought to have. If you already have a voucher management system in place, this list of features will help you upgrade and improve on your already existing system. 

There are quite a number of benefits your business stands to gain from having a gift voucher management system. From improved sales to improved offline visibility to customer satisfaction and retention, your business will receive tractions with a good gift voucher management system. 

Confused as to what a gift card or a gift voucher mean? 

Both terms mean the same. Their difference is actually tied to the location of their use. We generally refer to them as gift cards but in North America, they are called gift certificates. In the United Kingdom, they are called gift tokens or gift vouchers.

Whether we say gift card or gift voucher system we actually refer to the same item. For clarity and less ambiguity, we would stick to the term gift card.

What is a Gift Card?

A good gift card is a form of prepaid debit cards that contains a specific amount of money which can be used to make a variety of purchases. There are two (2) kinds of gift cards:

  • Open-loop gift cards and
  • Closed-loop gift cards 

An open-loop gift card can be used to make purchases in different stores like gift cards issued by MasterCard and Visa while closed-loop gift cards are designed to be used specifically for a retail store. 

Whatever the type, it is no news that digital gift cards, especially eGift cards are rapidly dominating the market as a perfect choice for people who patronize e-commerce stores.

For any business offering products to sell, it must integrate a gift card management system. More than 90 percent of US shoppers buy or receive a gift card every year. 

Related: 5 Ways That Gift Vouchers Can Be Used As Small Business Tools

10 Characteristics of a Gift Card or Voucher Management System

1. Automation 

One of the factors that have influenced the growth of the use of gift cards is the ease it affords users and online shoppers. A buyer does not need to have FIAT currencies or use his or her bank debit card which incurs charges when they try to buy stuff from retailers especially online. 

The automation of the buying process is one key feature your gift card system must employ. It should be very easy for buyers to get what they want and pay for it without undergoing any rigorous process. 

The growth of your business should be followed by an easier payment process for product purchases. Your gift card management system should make that possible.

Related: Beginner’s Guide to Understanding Different Payment Processing Fees

2. Customer Segmentation 

This feature directly impacts the marketing of your business. Customer segmentation is the process of placing your customers into groups based on certain characteristics so you know the exact marketing model which suits them.

With customer segmentation, your marketing strategies will be streamlined so as to meet the specific needs of your customers effectively and precisely. With effective marketing comes a rise in sales. This is why a valuable gift card system should make an allocation for customer segmentation so that you can meet their demands appropriately.

3. Re-Engagement 

Customers may not always make a purchase when they begin. They may just make selections of the things they need and place them in their cart until a later time. Your gift card management app should be able to trigger the workflow process when the user comes to continue his or her purchase. 

The best gift card system for small businesses should be able to divide your customers into groups so you can reach dormant users and place time limits on the gift cards you issue to them. By this, you can send a gift card to a customer valid for only 7 days if the customer just recently signed up.

Related: 4 Automation Tools That Can Be A Secret Weapon For Your Sales Team

4. Customer Appreciation

Gift card management system you can use to appreciate your customers

Gift card management system you can use to appreciate your customers

Offer gift cards to loyal customers as a show of appreciation for patronizing and buying your product. This will help you maintain your customers effortlessly. The gift card you issue is not a regular gift card but one that has a beautiful design with a message having a personal touch and undertone. 

Your gift card management system should take inventory of the activities of your customers, select the most loyal customer and give them a gift card.  This allows them access offers that are not accessible to other regular customers. 

Some of the interesting “Thank You” phrases you can use in your gift card are:

  • With special thanks and much appreciation.
  • Sincere thanks for your extra efforts.
  • Your thoughtfulness is appreciated so much more than words can say.
  • With sincere gratitude for all you have done.
  • You’re the best!
  • You made my day!
  • It was a pleasure to work with you.
  • Thank you for thinking of us.

Related: How to Determine the Best Corporate Gift for Your Customers

5. Referral Rewards 

A referral program should be connected to your gift card management software. This is where you give incentives or a commission to anyone who endorses or refers your business to new customers.

As a tool, your gift card management system will not only give a gift card as an appreciation for referrals but integrate cart-level discounts, loyalty programs and the use of coupon codes using this product integration tool.

6. Customer Personalization 

Customer personalization should be paramount as it makes targeting much easier. Customers will likely use gift cards that represent their interests and includes their favorite product, services and personal data. 

Some customer personalization examples for your gift card management system are:

  1. Redemption limits 
  2. Card design, value and code pattern
  3. Start and expiry dates of cards.
  4. Segment-specific limitations 
  5. Order and product-specific limitations

Related: 5 Ways Online Stores Can Protect Themselves From Cyber Attacks

7. Quick Distribution 

Quick card distribution is key to ending your sales campaign with profit. Failure to distribute your gift cards on time will hamper your efforts to make profitable sales. 

To ensure quick distribution of gift cards, you can sign up with MailChimp so you can easily send electronic gift cards via email. Other additional distribution channels can be adopted such as QR code scanning, SMS messages, and push notifications. 

8. Tracking 

There is a widespread of gift card theft and internet fraud, your gift card management system should help customers track lost or stolen gift cards. 

The system should be able to track and give them a report showing client and recipient names, purchase date, gift card number, initial and remaining balance. It should also provide information such as purchase date and location.

Related: Why Businesses Must Adopt an Online CRM Software

9. Data Synchronization 

Data synchronization is the process of synchronizing data while experiencing automatic updates between them. It is the process of establishing consistency among data from source to the target storage. 

Your business deals with customer data which has a need for periodic changes. This should be efficiently managed by your gift card management platform. 

10. Digitization 

The ultimate goal of most businesses today considering the toll COVID-19 is having on businesses is making their retail stores digital. Giving your business an online presence and a digital space to operate from should be one of the features of your gift card management system. 

There is an increased need for rapid digitization looking at the current trend of events. In-store sales will no longer survive as the only means of buying and selling. This is why it is important to master how to create a great in-store experience for your customers. Business continuity is now hinged on digitization and a business’s survival is predicated on this premise.

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Emenike Emmanuel
I am a multiple Award-winning blogger, CEO of Entrepreneur Business Blog, Chief Evangelist of Ebusinessroom Ventures, Lead Coach of The Excellent Entrepreneurs' Network (TEEN) and Convenor of #NaijaSitUp. My business is to help you start, manage and grow a profitable and sustainable business using digital marketing strategies. I have been featured and mentioned on platforms like, BloggingTips, StarterStory, StatusBrew, Realty Times, Emerald TV, SmartBCamp, Blogging from Paradise, Write Worldwide, Enterprise Boom, Atang Magazine, etc. In 2019, my blog won the Best Digital Media Award from AB Afrikpreneur. When you want to hire a professional to handle your online marketing, I'm your go-to-expert you can speak to. In 2019, I won the Blogger of the Year from the Global Excellence in Marketing Awards, USA and my brainchild, EBB won the Best Digital Media Award at the AB Afrikpreneur Awards. You can connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn with this handle, @EmenikeNg

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