Physical gift cards and digital gift cards are convenient tools to encourage new and returning customers. While most physical gift cards come preloaded with a specific amount (such as $25, $50, or $100), digital gift cards normally can be set to any amount.

Why not combine the flexibility of digital gift cards with the emotional appeal of physical cards? Some retailers are offering customers the choice to set a custom value for physical gift cards during purchase.

Here’s why you should consider this choice, and how it works.

Benefits of physical gift cards

For retailers, physical gift cards can boost sales and branding. You might be missing out on a lot of customers and sales if you don’t offer them.

Gift cards are excellent sales opportunities, especially during the holiday season as they make for excellent last-minute gifts. A quick search on Google Trends shows that gift cards searches always peak during December:

Google Trends Gift Cards Search Result
Gift Cards Search Result on Google Trends

Many customers will be looking for physical gift cards as they “feel” more personal than digital ones. And when someone receives a gift card of your brand, they might give your business a try and become a new customer. In addition, physical gift cards serve as a constant reminder of your brand in your customer’s mind, and encourage them to return to your store in the future.

Selling physical gift cards that can be set to a specific value offers more flexibility for the customers. They can choose to buy high-value gift card, or pick a small amount that’s convenient to them. In the competitive world of retail, more convenience for the customer leads to better experience, and better experience leads to more sales.

Process of selling physical gift cards with custom value

Basic requirements

Magento retailers looking to sell physical gift cards with custom value will need a Gift card solution.

Gift card is a core feature in Magento Commerce. For retailers with Open Source version, you can take advantage of Magestore’s Gift Card feature, available in our POS Professional and Enterprise packages.

To sell physical gift cards with custom value, you can customize your POS so cashier can add gift card value during checkout – talk to us if you’re interested.

Printing physical gift cards to display & sell on POS

The first step to sell physical gift cards is to produce and display them in your store. To keep track of gift card status, each gift card should have a unique gift card code in your Magento system.

There are two ways to achieve this:

Print the cards with the gift codes first. After checkout, these codes and the corresponding values will be imported into Magento system. Let’s call this Option A.

Sell physical gift cards custom value - Workflow for Option A
Sell physical gift cards custom value – Workflow for Option A

On the other hand, you can generate gift codes from your Magento system first, print them on the gift cards, then activate the gift card during checkout. This means the gift code is already in the system, with “Inactive” status. We’ll call this Option B.

Sell physical gift cards custom value - Workflow for Option B
Sell physical gift cards custom value – Workflow for Option B

After printing the physical gift cards, you can place them on the shelf in your store so customers can purchase them. Many retailers choose to display gift cards in front of the checkout counter. This ensures that all customers can see and pick them easily.

Selling physical gift cards with custom value on POS

To check out physical gift cards, the cashier can choose the option “Sell Gift Card” on POS:

Sell physical gift cards on POS
Sell physical gift cards on POS

They can then scan or input the code on the card and enter the value the customer’s chosen:

Update physical gift cards value on POS
Update physical gift cards value on POS

The next steps are different for the two options. Let’s see how it works in each case.

For Option A (print card first & import gift code during checkout)

In this situation, the system will check if the gift code is already in the system. If the code already exists and is active, it means this gift card has been activated before and your cashier won’t be able to proceed. On the other hand, if the gift code doesn’t exist in the system, this is a new gift code. The staff can then add value to the card and take payment.

On one hand, this option gives cashier the ability to import any code into the system and sell all the cards in your inventory without any problem. On the other hand, there is a risk when staff can enter any random gift code and give values to the code. Retailers choosing this option will have to consider a mechanism to prevent sales misconduct.

For Option B (generate gift code first & activate card during checkout)

Unlike option A, the staff can only proceed if the gift code already exists in the system and has the “inactive” status. A code meeting these conditions means that it’s been generated by the system and not some random number. It also hasn’t been activated, meaning it’s a new card.

This will help mitigate the risk of misconduct outlined in Option A.

The POS will use the value of the gift card as the default original price. The staff can apply any discount for the customer during payment if necessary.

Add physical gift cards to cart on POS screen
Add physical gift cards to cart on POS screen

Activating gift card

In the case of Option A, after checkout, the system will import the gift code and value.

Import physical gift cards & value to Magento backend
Import physical gift cards & value to Magento backend

With Option B, after checkout, the system will update the gift code status to “active:”

Update physical gift cards status in Magento backend
Update physical gift cards status in Magento backend

Customers can use the gift card to pay for later purchases.

Implement the solution with Magento & Magestore POS

Here are 4 simple steps to implement physical gift cards with custom value in your system, if you want to use Magento and Magestore POS:

  • Step 1: Install Magento.
  • Step 2: Setup Magestore POS with Gift Card feature.
  • Step 3: Implement customized solution:
  • Option A: Import gift code and value into the system after checkout,
  • Option B: Generate gift card with special status (Inactive), change gift code value status to Active after checkout.
  • Step 4: Train your staff on how to use the system to sell physical gift cards.

And you’re ready to sell!

Conclusion

Selling physical gift cards with custom value can be beneficial for your business. In order to keep track of gift cards and gift codes, we’ve recommended two ways to implement this with Magento and our customizable POS. If this is what you’re looking for, book a FREE consultation with us and we’ll get back to you with a solution that works best for your business!

Happy selling!

Author

Jackie writes about industry trends, tips & tricks, and everything in between to help retailers start and grow their awesome business.

3 Comments

  1. The idea is great! I have found this solution for such a long time! The current system does not allow us to sell gift card at the preferred amount. And it is impossible in our traditional POS. How much does it cost?

    • Jackie Tran Reply

      Hi Jennifer, glad to know we might be able to help! Would you like to talk with one of our product consultants via email, so we can work out the best solution for you?

    • Jackie Tran Reply

      Hi Jennifer,
      We tried contacting you but the email bounced. Can you let us know of another email address so we can discuss a gift card solution for you?

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