2022 calendar, highlighting the key dates of a gift card program

by | 3 Jan, 2022 | INSIGHTS

The year 2021 helped many economies recover from the strong impact of the pandemic on brands and retailers, but not a complete return to the way it was.

Nevertheless, e-retailers were able to take advantage of the situation: strong increase in digital purchases, adoption of digital and contactless payments, new consumer behaviors online… These new trends have continued their progression this year. 

How can you keep this evolution going in 2022 and try to stand out with your gift card program?

Here are key dates to remember for the year 2022.

Promoting gift cards

There are times when it’s appropriate to give each other gifts. Consumers are therefore more likely to buy and offer gift cards. For that, they need to know when a brand offers them. That is why it is important not to miss the boat and anticipate key moments in a gift card program. For each of these high potential dates, a brand must work on their program, make gift cards visible on their website and shelves, and launch communication campaigns on this increasingly popular product.

The holiday season : a crucial period

Christmas and the holiday season have just come to an end and many brands offering gift cards have noted a significant increase in their cards’ sales. The end of the year is the most important period for a gift card program. Indeed, starting October until the very last minute of December, an increasing number of consumers want to buy or receive gift cards. It is the ultimate gift, easily personalized and very practical. A program’s revenue can be multiplied by 10*, provided that it is given a boost.

*BuyBox

For 2022, brands will have to anticipate early buyers’ demands, as well as smart shoppers’ in search for good deals during Black Friday on November 25th 2022 and Cyber Monday on November 28th 2022. But also the 24th of December late shoppers’ needs.

Valentine’s day: the key date not to be missed

Valentine’s day, happening on the 14th of February 2022 as usual, is yet another opportunity to highlight gift cards. It has become a tradition in many countries for consumers to give their significant other a present on that day. In 2021, many American consumers took part in this demonstration of love. And their budget was surprisingly high, they planned to spend up to $165, compared to €150 in France*. Even if flowers, dinner dates, jewelry and chocolates are the main gifts on the market, some like to give or receive gift cards from their favorite brands. Cards are seen as very practical for those who are afraid of getting it wrong or disappointing their loved one. They are also lifesavers for scatterbrained latecomers: in 2021, 30% of men’s purchases were made the same day, compared to 20% for woman*.

*NRF’s 2021 Valentine’s Day spending survey

*Altics

Important events: Mother’s day, Father’s day and Grandparents day

Days dedicated to loved ones are always a good time for gift card sales. It can be from brands the recipient already likes, or from a brand they are unfamiliar with but they might like.

Mother’s day (27th of March 2022 in the UK, May 29th in France, May 8th in the US) is probably the most important and celebrated day. 86% of Americans and 80% of French planned on celebrating it in 2022. And they don’t hesitate to put their money where their mouth is. This year, American consumers had planned to spend an average of $220* for their mother. Brands, especially flower shops as well as beauty and cosmetic brands usually experience a revenue surge. Offering gift cards would allow them to maximize this growth until the very last minute, especially if digital gift cards are offered on the brand’s website. Just like for Valentine’s day or Christmas, this celebration has many latecomers.

*NRF’s Annual Mother’s Day survey

Father’s day (19th of June 2022) is certainly less important than Mother’s day, but it gives brands another opportunity to perform. Once again, highlighting gift cards and communicating on this occasion can increase the program’s revenue and bring in new customers. US consumers expected to spend an average of $174 in 2021*.

*National Retail Federation

Finally, there is Grandparents day which shouldn’t be forgotten in a gift card program (6th of March and 2nd of October 2022).

Back to school: the right time

Although it is not a celebration per-say, back-to-school season is an important time, which can be stressful for parents as well as children. A lot of money is spent in school supplies and other needs. Some have taken up the habit of giving children little gifts to motivate them after the long summer break, or to parents in order to ease the cost burden. Gift cards are always a great option. In the US, families spend an average of $849 on back-to-school items*.

*National Retail Federation

Sale season: an opportunity for brands

Twice a year, all retailers and e-retailers pull out all the stops with their promotions. Their revenue increases significantly, although, in 2021, sales revenues showed mixed results and have still not returned to 2019 levels.

“What do gift cards have to do with it?” you might ask. There are no gift exchanges during sales. Consumers are not looking for gifts, except if they have a friend or a relative’s birthday coming up. That is true, however, in this case, gift cards should not be used or sold as a product. During sales, they become a formidable promotional tool. Increasing traffic, the average shopping basket, acquiring new clients or sparking the interest of older customers… It can be of great support throughout sale seasons and bear results.

2022: sharing key moments of customers’ life

Apart from national holidays, every individual experiences key moments in his or her life : birthdays, births, weddings, house-warming parties, retirement parties…

Brands have to take these life events into accounts. Of course, they cannot prepare communication campaigns since these are “private” and individual events. However, they can offer gift cards with a set amount for their most loyal customers’ birthday. A gift card system should always be handy and easy to find for consumers looking for birthday or wedding gifts. Brands should be able to offer different visuals depending on the events, so their customers can buy the perfect gift, and always hit the nail on the head.

Once again, the year 2022 will be filled with commercial highlights that the gift card can respond to, one more opportunity for brands to stand out.

White paper e-gift card for Christmas

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