Gift cards are nothing new to many businesses. As a branding tool, they allow you to keep your name top of mind with raving fans but also bring familiarity to new guests who receive them as gifts. In times of inconsistent revenue, they can even be a much-needed cash boost. Gift cards are an all-around benefit allowing your restaurant or bar to pull in new customers or entice people to return.
Traditionally the preferred method of selling gift cards has been using physical plastic cards that are encoded with specific gift card data. The card would be sold through the POS and activated at the time of payment. That card would then be used either by a returning guest or a lucky gift recipient. The stored value on the card could be completely used in one transaction or have only a portion redeemed at that time to save the remaining balance for use on another day. More money can be added at any time so the customer can continue using the same card over and over again.
Physical cards are great as gifts, especially if you are including them in a basket or with other items. They are also useful for giveaways or promotions, again allowing you to push your brand name in the community. Plastic cards typically are required for doing bulk activations so cards can be preactivated and sold or given away through a third party or at alternative locations.
Physical cards do also have an additional cost to them since you have to purchase the plastic cards in bulk as well as any graphic design that may be required to have them printed. Printing times may also vary throughout the year with long wait times always around major holidays.
E-gift cards are a fantastic way to offer digital gift cards that don’t have the upfront cost of buying physical cards to distribute. They also allow you to sell and activate cards online so guests can purchase or send them even when they are not at your location. They are convenient for your customers to use and can still be used in conjunction with physical gift cards. Many businesses even choose to use only digital gift cards which allows them to maximize the profit of each dollar activated.
When someone purchases a digital gift card online an email is sent to them instead of receiving a physical card. This email includes the business’s branding and location information. If the card is purchased as a gift for someone else, the purchaser can also send a customized message to the recipient.
Digital gift cards purchased through Focus E-gift can be redeemed through the POS at your location or through select online ordering platforms, including Focus Online. The digital card can also be stored in a phone’s digital wallet for easy access and balance updates.
Selling gift cards at your location or online has never been easier with Focus Gift. The simple platform allows you to sell and manage cards online and at the POS. Onboarding and setup are fast and are included with any FocusCloud subscription.
Focus Gift also provides multi-unit groups options for gift card reconciliation across multiple locations or to centralized holding accounts.