Sell mobile Gift Certificates Online – Grow sales up to 50% in < 3 months

mobile gift certificates

gift certificate online exampleWe’ve just done a simple thing for a made-to-measure suits brand, which I founded and which is now run by my partners. Comparable sales are up by 50% in less than 3 month. They started to sell gift certificates online geared for the smartphone era with the help of my new venture – Mobsted. The solution sends a text greeting with a certificate’s link to anyone’s mobile number and allows buying and getting all the gift certificates online. On smartphones. No apps installed.

In the suiting business, printable gift certificates were about 9% of cash flow and now it is 15%! Also the amount of people gifting jumped almost twice. Why?

  • Ultimate convenience.
  • Instant gratitude.
  • Last moment thoughts.
  • Avoidance of the personal contact.
  • Many various forces come in play here.

My goal here is to provide a view on what to consider, when you decide to do the same.

cert selectConnecting to Your Product or Service is THE DECISION.

It can make or break you idea – the right things must be available for gifting:

  • It can be just a prepaid amount of money, which is the easiest, but it can show an “i don’t care, just buy something” kind of attitude and thus much lower penetration for certain audiences.
  • When making a specific product/service available for a e-gift  – you need to decide what to list – all or a limited set. It is often better to limit to a basic set (5-10 choices), as not all gifters will spend time learning your product.
  • Listing your full catalog or going for a real time availability means you will need an online integration with “whatever“, for your gift certificates online to be painless. It can be either e-commerce platforms like Shopify or PrestoShop or cloud storages of tables, like Google Tables and MS Cloud, all of which can have connections pre-integrated with a gift certificates online solution. However if you use a custom system, than it is just quicker and easier to go for manually adding 5-10 choices and be done with it for a start.

gift certificates online payBuilt in Payments – a must have for gift certificates online

You obviously need to take payments. It will mostly be pre-payments or in a very rare case a post factum payments, when a gifter belongs to a trusted group of customers, like with club members. When you already accept payments on your website you could probably continue using it for gift certificates online as well, especially if your website runs on some popular platform. Most platforms have a somewhat similar set of payment service providers (PSP). If there is no fit between PSPs of your current platform and of the online gift certificates solution of your choice, you will need to register once again, but most registrations with such streamlined PSPs, like Stripe or Braintree take about an hour. The same goes for businesses that don’t yet take online payments at all.

gift certificates online

Unique Design and a Personal Wish

You may want to create several different designs of gift certificates online based on the type of gift. For example, a gift of money and of a particular product can be different. A gift for a birthday or a business present should be different. It can be just giving a choice between backgrounds. Also, a personal wish is a must have feature. A smart phone is a natural tool for that and can relay not just text, but also an audio or video message in a breeze.

Nothing to Install & Less Competition

You need to make sure there is nothing to install on either side. There are mobile apps, which feature gift certificates online from many companies, but generally both sender and receiver must have the same app. You also will have loads of “last moment” competition from similar products luring gifters away before a purchase. Participating in these systems for new traffic makes sense. But routing customers, who already know you, into your own mobile gift certificates system makes more sense.

Power & Flexibility

landlineRouting “existing” customers to your mobile gift system may sound easy, but its not. You need to have your good-looking icon everywhere – your website (especially the mobile version), your social media page, your FB Messenger, Telegram and Kik chat bots. You also need to make sure that customers don’t confuse phone numbers in their contact books by trying to send gift links to a land line, so a mobile gift certificates system should check for cell phone numbers. A solution should be ready to go, yet be flexible for your future needs, so check how deep a solution can be changed.

The conclusion

Generally, I recommend starting with a simple system without any integrations. Allow gifting a sum of money or choosing between several of your most popular products, use instant payments, create one or two designs with ability to add wishes. In other words – let your fans sending your products and services to their relatives and co-workers in the least hassling way – from a mobile to a mobile. If your choice falls to the platform, which has a pre-built Gift Certificates Online module, alongside with other mobile solutions, we will gladly help every step of the way.

constructing mobile gift certificate

Constructing gift certificates app in Mobsted Mobile App Maker

By Alex Burlitsky, CEO at 24 January 2017