FutureWire - futurism and emerging technology

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

More Shoppers Turning to Gift Cards this Holiday

Time was, the gift card was considered the lazy person's way out of holiday shopping, or a last-minute stocking stuffer at best. No longer. According to the gift card industry, 84% of US consumers will buy a gift card this year, with the average US consumer expected to spend $248 on gift cards this holiday season.

In today's marketplace, gift cards offer many advantages for both consumers and retailers. Many shoppers appreciate the opportunity to shop themselves at their favorite stores with their gift cards, allowing them to take advantage of post-holiday sales and the latest products. Gift cards can be used online as well as in stores, adding to their convenience.

For gift givers, cards take the guesswork out of shopping; one might know that a recipient likes clothes, but not exact styles and sizes. Cards also save time, can be mailed easily, and can be purchased at grocery stores and other convenient retailers. For stores, gift cards often encourage shoppers to spend more money than they might otherwise, and cut down on post-holiday gift returns.

Best of all, Santa can fit many more gift cards on his sleigh! So odds are you may receive one or more gift cards this holiday season.

Source: eMarketer