Christmas is only six days away. If you haven't finished shopping yet, chances are you'll be picking up some gift cards in the next few days. And you won't be alone. 67% of consumers will purchase at least one gift card this holiday season and more than one in every four digital gift cards sold in December are purchased between Dec. 21 and 24*. So you still have time.

Gift cards are important for any retailer as the average shopper spends an extra 20% beyond the card value when redeeming and 75% of those shoppers who overspend spend 60% more*. But the benefits don't end there.

Gift cards can and should be an acquisition point - not just for the buyer but the receiver as well. Sephora does an excellent job with its gift card strategy.

First, it promotes eGift cards as it would any other product, making it easy for last minute shoppers to purchase and offering an incentive to do so.

It asks for the recipient's email address for delivery and you may also choose to add their mobile number so they receive a text message with a link to view the gift card online.

It not only sends the buyer an email confirmation upon purchase, but also when the gift card has been viewed:

Taking this strategy to the next level, your email and text messages to the recipient could include an opt-in link so you can continue to market to them. The recipients could be new to your brand or first time buyers and you want to do everything you can to engage them on an ongoing basis. It's the first step towards building long-term and loyal customers.

Happy shopping!


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