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Study: e-gifts are on the rise


When mobile shoppers care enough to send the very best, they trade Hallmark cards in favor of digital gift cards.

As digitally-savvy shoppers grow increasingly reliant on mobile devices or computers to store their personal data, it is not surprising that e-gift usage is growing. These digital gift cards are delivered to recipients via email, social media or text messages, and are redeemable in-store, online or via mobile devices. While 89% of consumers reported they have purchased at least one plastic gift card in the last year, a move that keeps plastic gift cards as a top gift-giving choice, 71% of these shoppers have also purchased one or more e-gifts during the same timeframe.

These findings are from “Blackhawk's eGift Misconceptions Survey,” a report based on responses from 1,144 American participants. According to the report, only 13% of respondents said they have purchased a gift card from an exchange site, yet 78% said they would feel moderately to extremely safe about purchasing a gift card on a gift card exchange site. Another 48% say they would consider using an exchange service to buy or sell gift cards.

The report also revealed that nearly half of consumers surveyed (42%) have purchased e-gifts for both gifts and self-use. In fact, 78% of consumers reported they would purchase an e-gift for self-use if it were offered at a discount.

When it comes to gift giving, 30% of consumers have purchased an e-gift specifically with the recipient in mind because they knew the recipient would like it. However speed and ease of delivery were the most important factors influencing their purchase. In fact, the majority of respondents (91%) agreed that e-gifts are "quick and easy" to buy. They are also appealing gifts because they are delivered in minutes (45%); provide delivery notifications (39%), and offer the option to include a digital greeting card (28%), the report revealed.

Of those who have received an e-gift card, 71% thought it was easy to use online, and 51% said it was "just like other gift cards.” Other benefits included not having to worry about losing it (48%); using them without having a plastic card (48%), and the ability to use them in-store (38%), the report said.
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