I bet many of you, just like me, have relentlessly scrutinised the daily and weekly comparison data for your gift card businesses and programmes. At times that has almost been grimly fascinating, as we see the daily reveal of the extent of the fall off as the Covid19 lockdown really began to bite. And where those brands are bucking the trend and performing strongly with relevant and available services, their performance has been like a warm internal glow, thank you!
In recent weeks, however, I wanted to understand if the underlying gift card purchasing behaviours have held up when you strip away the rather crude high-level measures like total cards sold, total load values, and so on. In simple terms, did the people who were still buying gift cards during lockdown behave any differently to how they normally do, and would this be a good way to predict wider consumer gift card purchase behaviour as the lockdown lifts?
So I pointed our Savvy Power BI Analytics engine at the collective processing data across all of our merchants to see what it might reveal. I defined Weeks 13-21 inclusive as the period of Covid impact. You can see some of the visual results below. Feel free to reach out to me with any queries on this.
Unsurprisingly, there has been clear and at least temporary brand shift in demand towards those that are open for business, and a rampant demand for digital product. Lockdown easing will take care of the ‘open for business’ problem so ensuring you have a digital offer is the other ‘must have’. I’m confident you’ll be good to go then as customer volumes return to the high street, pubs and restaurants as the lockdown eases, and that consumers will pick up where they left off in gift card terms at least. If you’re an issuer with no online issuance and/or redemption capability yet, well, I’m sure you’ve already decided to address that.