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How to boost sales of ecommerce gift cards on your online store

Written by: Jessica Farrelly

Article // April 3, 2020

As COVID-19 continues to create unprecedented challenges for the retail industry, one positive trend to emerge is the growth in sales of ecommerce gift cards. 

Many consumers are making a conscious effort to support independent brands and retailers as they deal with store closures and stock issues. Purchasing gift cards is recognized as an easy way to inject cash flow while sales of other products may be faltering, and the practice is being widely encouraged on social media.

To support this, Shopify is making their gift card feature available on all plan levels, at no additional cost to their platform users. Whether you’re enabling this feature for the first time as a result, or you’ve been selling e-gift cards for a while, there are a number of steps you can take to increase their visibility on your ecommerce store.

So, here are four simple tactics that you can implement as a merchant to put your gift cards front and center. 

Create ecommerce gift card redirects

Many online retailers are struggling to maintain stock levels right now. Instead of sending shoppers who search for sold-out items to ‘out-of-stock’ or ‘no results found’ pages, try creating redirects to customized gift card landing pages. Make sure to adapt your messaging to acknowledge that the shopper’s preferred product isn’t currently available, and encourage them to complete their purchase with a gift certificate at a later date. 

ecommerce gift cards

This approach isn’t just for low-inventory items, either. Check your site reports for insights into other search terms that typically produce irrelevant results or fail to convert. Maybe shoppers regularly search for a brand you don’t carry, or a product that’s only available in-store? Consider whether gift cards might be an appropriate suggestion on the landing pages for those keywords.

Boost and promote gift cards

Gift certificates might not be something you typically include on your category or product results pages, but it’s worth considering if you’re running low on the items you would usually feature. Boost gift cards where relevant, pin them to the top of search results, and feature them in your trending lists. Don’t forget to utilize promotional banners throughout your site to advertise that gift certificates are available. Your shoppers can’t buy what they can’t see.  

Cross-sell with other gifts

Perhaps you already sell products that are commonly purchased as gifts, but find that your customers struggle to choose the right style or variation for their loved one. This is the perfect opportunity to highlight your gift certificate offering. Not only does this make their purchase decision easier, the recipient will also be able to choose a product that meets their own preferences – and you will likely have a smaller volume of returns to manage.  

ecommerce gift cards

Feature ecommerce gift cards throughout your marketing 

Don’t forget to get the word out beyond your website. Leverage your email and social media marketing to remind customers of upcoming holidays that your gift cards might be suitable for. For those currently celebrating birthdays and other milestones while social distancing, online gift cards are a thoughtful way to mark the occasion from afar. 

Special events aside, don’t be afraid to reach out to your mailing list to ask loyal customers for their support. If you can, offer a product giveaway or reward as a thank you to those who purchase gift cards that they can redeem at a later date. Your shoppers might just be happy to stock up for their own personal use when life returns to normal. 

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