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26th March 2024

Gift Card Market Trends

What do the cost-of-living crisis, “Gen Z” consumers, and virtual vouchers all have in common? They all influence the latest gift card trends. The global gift card market is set to hit a value of $843.11 billion by 2027, and with the rise of online shopping, for example, this has meant e-commerce gift cards are still growing in popularity. Below I will share 6 Trends that are set to shake the market in 2024

  • E-gift Cards Could Overtake Physical Ones For The First Time:
    E-gift cards now claim a 48% market share and analysts expect it to be only a matter of time before they claim the top spot. The pandemic is thought to have accelerated this shift with users forced to use them instead of physical versions. Experience with our own clients shows that that gap has in fact closed and exceeded for some brands, for example, Theatre Tokens.

  • Gen Z Are Hot on Gift Cards:
    “Gen Z” consumers (12 to 24-year-olds) plan to spend 56% more on gift cards this year than in 2022/2023. Gen Z can use these at multiple brands (also known as open-loop gift cards), it’s thought that the cost-of-living crisis has made them love a good deal. Gift cards that act as small perks, such as ‘buy one, get one free’ or freebie gift cards, are especially popular and encourage young people to both treat themselves and engage with a brand.
  • Holiday Seasons are More Important Than Ever:
    The findings showed that older generations buy an average of 10 gift cards, while young shoppers accumulate an incredible 17 of them. In a competitive market, a stellar festive gift card campaign can put a retailer on the map.

  • Users Are Happy to Pay More For a Sustainable Card:
    Climate change has impacted every industry and it’s no different with gift card trends. 71% of Gen Z consumers stay loyal to brands that are transparent with their ESG principles. For retailers, upgrading sustainable practices within gift card programs is a strategic move. This includes eco-friendly packaging, supporting charitable causes, and reducing carbon footprints.
  • The Cost-of-Living Crisis is Influencing Gift Card Types:
    Grocery gift vouchers are experiencing a growth rate of 26%. This hints at people supporting loved ones with essentials as well as employers who have provided staff with gift cards for necessities rather than luxuries. Rather than cutting down, consumers have been adapting to tough economic conditions with their choices.

  • Gift Card Data is Still an Unmined Resource:
    The Advantages of using a gift card program is the built-in data capabilities they come with. With this information, they can tweak their campaigns to get more exposure and sales. Sales growth within retail was largely driven by B2B, reflecting the continued rise of gift card schemes as an employee value proposition, enabling staff to access discounts and offers as pressure on household finances intensifies.

In summary, I always advise my clients to follow the key information outlined above. By understanding these trends associated with E-gift cards, your business can embark on a successful journey of technological transformation with confidence and resilience.