Feb 11, 2022

7 Reasons Restaurants Should Have a Digital Gifting Program

What’s the main reason any restaurant should have a digital gifting program? It allows you to sell one of the most popular items on the market. Gift cards may be small in size, but the opportunity is big:

global gift card market is expected to reach $750B by 2026.1

Don’t you wish you were set up to get your slice of that pie? Well, as the global leader in branded payments, Blackhawk Network is here to help. But if you’re not yet convinced, here are 7 more reasons why you should develop your own digital gifting platform:

Reason 1: Additional Revenue!

Our typical customer’s gift card program brings in an additional 2–5% of their company’s total annual revenue.2 This varies widely by industry, but restaurants have the greatest opportunity:

  • Grocery, C-Store and Fuel: .5–1.5%
  • Travel & Entertainment: 1–2%
  • Big Box Retailers: 1–2.5%
  • Casual Dining: 5–10%
  • Quick-Serve Restaurants/Coffee Chains: 1–20%

Reason 2: Your Customers Will Spend More

When people bring their gift cards to your restaurant to use as payment (in person or online), they typically spend more than the value of the gift card. In fact, for fine dining, fast casual and others, 80% will spend more.3

Reason 3: Capture Last-Minute Gifters

When your customers procrastinate their gift-giving, you can save the day (and gain their long-lasting appreciation). Not only can they pick up a physical gift card for your restaurant on the way to an event, but they can also buy eGift cards and send them anywhere in the world almost instantly.

This is especially relevant during the holidays—22% of all holiday gift card sales take place at the last minute.4

Reason 4: Get Your Piece of the eGift Card Growth

eGift card sales are growing at a rapid pace. During the 2020 holiday season, sales of eGifts increased more than 80% YOY.5 But this shouldn’t be a surprise; more people are going touchless, more people are ordering for curbside pickup or delivery and eGifts are faster and easier for gifting and for self-use.

Reason 5: People Love Gift Cards

Why would you not want to sell the most popular gift item? How popular are gift cards?

They’ve been the #1 most requested
holiday gift for 15 years in a row.6

Not only do they love gift cards, but they’re also loving restaurant gift cards more and more. These numbers reflect restaurant gift cards sold in 2021 compared to 20207:

  • Family dining: +106%
  • Fine dining: +57%
  • QSRs: +7%
  • Overall: +22%

Reason 6: Gift Card Promotions Work Better

Promotions work. You know that. But according to our research, gift card-based promotions outperform promotions that use discounts, coupons or special offers. Plus, your gift cards can be used to drive almost any business objective:

  • Increase overall revenue
  • Increase dining traffic
  • Increase average ticket
  • Drive repeat visits
  • Promote specials
  • Drive holiday business
  • Drive business during slow days or dining periods
  • And more

Reason 7: Gift Cards are Good for Your Brand

As a foundation of your overall payments strategy, gift cards can do wonderful things for your brand every day:

  • Versatile sales drivers
  • Daily advertisement for your brand in your customers’ hands
  • Powerful customer service tools

How Can We Help?

Of course, you don’t have to be a gift card program expert to get your program going (or expand your current program). All you have to do is talk to a Blackhawk Network gift card expert. We can help you get started, or manage your entire program from start to finish—whatever you need.

Just go to BlackhawkNetwork.com for more information or, if you’re ready for a conversation, click here or call 866.219.7533.

1. Global Gift Cards Market Size, Market Share, Application Analysis, Regional Outlook, Growth Trends, Key Players, Competitive Strategies and Forecasts, 2018 to 2026, ResearchandMarkets.com, 2018
2. Blackhawk Network Sales Team Insights, 2021
3. First Data Prepaid Consumer Insights Study, Fiserv, 2018
4. Blackhawk Network Sales Team Insights, Winter Holidays, Valentine’s Day, Mother's Day and Father's Day
5. Blackhawk Network Data Analysis, 2021
6. 2021 Holiday By the Numbers, NRF
7. 2022 Holiday Preview Survey, Numerator, 2022