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Should a giftcard i give away fully cover the amount of a purchase?


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Hey all!

I am giving away a giftcard at an event. It basically gives a discount on my products. I am now getting complaints from people that they cannot get a free product for the amount of the giftcard.

So my question is: Should a giftcard that i give away cover the full amount of a product or not?

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17 minutes ago, Jules Catlyn said:

So my question is: Should a giftcard that i give away cover the full amount of a product or not?

Not necessarily.  Many merchants will give a gift card that is enough to cover most single items in their store, but there are plenty that give smaller amounts.  If you are trying to bring in new customers, you probably want to have the gift card to cover at least 50-75% of most prices. 

If most items in the store cost L$250 or more and I get a gift card for L$50, that alone wouldn't convince me to go check out the store.  Then again, I tend to check out stores based on demos and uniqueness of items more than anything else.

Edited by LittleMe Jewell
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11 minutes ago, Jules Catlyn said:

So my question is: Should a giftcard that i give away cover the full amount of a product or not?

No, there is no rule or anything that says that your giftcard should cover the full amount of a product. 

Sure, if you want to be super nice, you can give gift cards that cover the full purchase price of a product, but you are under no obligation to do so. 

And to the people that ***** and moan about you giving them a discount in the form of a gift card I would say: "be grateful that this creator was able to give you ANYTHING. Accept the discount or throw away the gift card. Ungrateful f***!"
Yeah, I have zero patience for that kind of a-holes and/or b*tches.

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Although I do agree that people should be grateful for items given away, it would be nice if a gift card could cover the price of at least a few items in a store.  It's kind of like giving away one shoe even if the other shoe is half price.  The gift card has cost you nothing in reality but it cost the receiver a price to purchase the other shoe so you haven't given anything away but did make a sale.

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I am in the same camp as Rowan.  If you are actually giving out a gift --- and it is MEANT as a gift then it should be a large enough amount to cover at least one typical item.  If you give away a gift card for 250 and have no products to buy at 250 then in my mind it isn't a gift -- and I tend to take a dim view of that practice. It sounds like some of your card recipients did too.   If you want to have a SALE (which is pretty much what a gift card that only covers part of the product is -- as you said yourself,  a "discount") then just have a sale.  

 

I typically never use or even go get "gift cards" that won't let me buy something without paying out of my pocket -- simply because I don't view it as a gift. That partial payment practice also takes the store down a notch or two in my eyes.  When "I" give out gifts they are for everyone (not just group - I don't have a group purposefully) and they are completely free. In MY mind that is what gift giving is about :D.   I have had some super popular Advent calendar years and this upcoming one will likely beat all records --- BUT I don't make sales because of that.  Maybe a handful only. I do it because I actually WANT to give out gifts.  

 

Obviously there is no RULE -- and personally I would never write and complain to someone giving out "partial product" gift cards :D.  Some folks may be thrilled to get them; just not me .

:SwingingFriends:

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This isn't a simple answer as it depends on the shop, products and context of the giftcard. For example, if an event has a policy of offering a free gift and you give a discount giftcard rather than an item, that isn't likely to leave people with warm fuzzies about your store.

There were complaints about previous shop and hop stores, because they locked the gift to a group rather than being for the public. This doesn't mean group gifts are bad in all situations. It means it'll annoy people if the gift was supposed to be for everyone.

In the end, you want people to be happy about the things you give away, so thinking through how different things will come across is more helpful than a yes/no answer.

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1 hour ago, Jules Catlyn said:

I am giving away a giftcard at an event. It basically gives a discount on my products

is all in how we use words and what expectation is raised by the words used

If is a giftcard then the expectation is that there is a gift at the end of it. If is a discount card then the expectation is that there is a discount at the end

suggest you name it discount card and not giftcard, so that your customers expectation of what words mean, are met

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3 hours ago, Polenth Yue said:

 

There were complaints about previous shop and hop stores, because they locked the gift to a group rather than being for the public. This doesn't mean group gifts are bad in all situations. It means it'll annoy people if the gift was supposed to be for everyone.

 

Just wanted to say that what you mention WAS against the LL rules --- UNLESS the creator ALSO gave an actual GIFT :D.  Even though it was against the rules it did happen and some of the merchants (and likely the public) complained.  I know "I" did. 

 

There were VERY CLEAR RULES for Shop and Hop and presumably still are.  Sometimes folks (usually top creators) slipped under the wire, but it WAS noticed and was reported.  We had "exiting surveys" for some of the Shop and Hops :D.   I haven't seen that group gift issue recently -- other than the OPTION to ALSO get an additional gift via group -- and the groups were mostly free, at least the ones that I checked out. 

 

But yes, NOT GOOD.  

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4 hours ago, Jules Catlyn said:

So my question is: Should a giftcard that i give away cover the full amount of a product or not?

If it's a gift card i'd expect it to cover the cost of at least some items. If it's a discount card make it clear it is, giving a 'gift' out like that does remind me of a very well know store that used to give out very time limited random could be worth as little as 1%, discounts as an event gift 

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If it is supposed to be the "free gift" at an Event, then it does need to be cover the cost of at least a few items at your store. 

If it is a hunt item or something you are giving out at your own store, it can be a discount card - and IMO, it doesn't really matter what it is called.  I'm a member of a store group that gives members a "gift card" every month and while there are a few items in the store that the gift card would fully cover, they can probably be counted on one hand.  Yet the card will cover 75% of the cost of the vast majority of the rest of the store.  It is still called a monthly gift card.

Edited by LittleMe Jewell
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8 hours ago, Jules Catlyn said:

Hey all!

I am giving away a giftcard at an event. It basically gives a discount on my products. I am now getting complaints from people that they cannot get a free product for the amount of the giftcard.

So my question is: Should a giftcard that i give away cover the full amount of a product or not?

People will whine no matter what you do in this situation.  Do what you feel is best because a vast majority don't appreciate stuff like this from what I've noticed.

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On 6/9/2021 at 11:07 PM, Rowan Amore said:

Although I do agree that people should be grateful for items given away, it would be nice if a gift card could cover the price of at least a few items in a store.  It's kind of like giving away one shoe even if the other shoe is half price.  The gift card has cost you nothing in reality but it cost the receiver a price to purchase the other shoe so you haven't given anything away but did make a sale.

This is the moment when I buy my coffee in the supermarket in RL.
During 2 for 1 offers.
50% discount is a great deal.
If you still don't take that offer, waiting to get a free pack of coffee, you most likely drink a lot of water before that happens.

IMHO: When someone isn't happy with a nice chunk of discount (the gift card), that person is not a potential customer but a free stuff hunter.
So a discount tool is a better marketing tool than a freebee in my book. It drives in people who are willing to pay for products and ignores freebee hunters.
And that is why you (general you) become a merchant. To sell stuff, not to give it away for free.

Yes, I know a lot of merchants give things away as freebee to get things out there for people to see and inspect it, but back to my coffee story in the beginning:
I would not buy at 2 tor 1 if I knew that they give the coffee away for free every three months for a week.
Giving away samples (demo's) is smart, giving away for free doesn't bring in much money for the seller.

Maybe it is a good idea not to call them gift cards in this case but a discount card.
With this card you get ...... L$ discount on the first product you obtain in my store.

Edited by Sid Nagy
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On 6/9/2021 at 4:55 PM, Fritigern Gothly said:

No, there is no rule or anything that says that your giftcard should cover the full amount of a product. 

Sure, if you want to be super nice, you can give gift cards that cover the full purchase price of a product, but you are under no obligation to do so. 

And to the people that ***** and moan about you giving them a discount in the form of a gift card I would say: "be grateful that this creator was able to give you ANYTHING. Accept the discount or throw away the gift card. Ungrateful f***!"
Yeah, I have zero patience for that kind of a-holes and/or b*tches.

To be honest, I like to check these forums just to see how some merchants perceive their customers. I'm probably not alone.

As for the topic,  it's very reasonable to assume a gift card would be enough to at least cover one product no matter the level of quality. I'm generally satisfied with most things free. I think most customers are.

I think a solution would be to maybe offer some lesser quality items at a price lower than the gift card while enticing the customer with greater products that are a little over the amount of the gift card. Or maybe have the gift card giveaway promotion coincide with a sale. Maybe the customer is so satisfied that they end up buying more products than what the gift card covers anyways.

 I think the idea should always be to upsell right? If the upsell technique is having a negative reaction the first step should be to evaluate and change the technique. This would be a lot more productive than showing customers or potential customers how you truly think of them on an open, public forum. Blaming the customer should never be the first step (no matter how justified).

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It seems disingenuous to me, to offer a "gift" which isn't sufficient to actually obtain anything in the store without adding more money to it. If you have to add money it's a marketing trick, not a gift. It should be enough to have the choice of a few things without contributing further funds. 

I can definitely vouch for @Paul Hexem's suggestion. I've lost count of the number of times I've bought something that was 2/3 the value of the gift card, and ended up spending more to purchase something else. That is a marketing trick too, but at least the card is still useful to someone for whom adding more L$ is actually impossible.

I have trashed gift cards that were insufficient to purchase anything, and not returned to the store.

So, I'd say if the typical cost of your items is L$200, make your gift card L$300.  Yes, some people will stop at the one free item but plenty more will spend another L$100 to get two things.

Edited by Maitimo
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