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Gift Card Statistics

Gift cards continue to be the most requested gift item for 2008 according to NRF's Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey conducted by BIG Rearch.  Gift cards topped consumer wish lists with 54.9% of surveyed adults over 18 indicating they would like to receive a gift card as a gift.

Birthdays top the list of occasions to give gift cards leading consumers to buy gift cards year-round. The survey showed 68 percent of consumers bought at least one gift card as a birthday gift while 61 percent bought at least one gift card as a Christmas/Hanukkah gift. Graduation, wedding, Mother's Day and Father's Day were among other occasions favored by consumers to purchase gift cards.  It was also observed many gift cards were purchased as "thank you" gifts of for "no special occasion".

Gift cards continue to increase in popularity as the number and variety of specialty and discount retailers jumping on the gift card band wagon continues to grow.

In the past 12 months nine out of 10 American adults either purchased or received a gift card representing a significant increase from prior years.

Teens have embraced the gift card market faster than any other age segment. A survey of teens indicated 98 percent of them have either bought or received a gift card.

88 percent of gift card purchasers bought more than one card. Consumers who purchased single retailer cards bought an average of five cards in a 12 month period.  The average amount spent on a card was $53.00 up from $46.00.  The average gift card recipient spent an additional $29.00 over the original value of the card.

The primary reason for the growing number of consumers purchasing gift cards is the fact they allow recipients to choose the gift they really want.  A marketing professional concurred: Consumers look at a $50 gift card and think, 'I can get a $75.00 item and it only cost me $25.00."  As such recipients view gift cards as helping them to attain the ideal gift at a cheap price while the gift give things, "I gave you the means to buy that thing" (72 percent).

Other reasons sited for consumers purchasing cards include ease and convenience of purchase (43 percent), simple redemption (38 percent), and gift cards being a fast and easy solution of what to purchase (33 percent).

Gift Card Facts

•  61 percent of gift card
   recipients spend more than
   the value of the card

•  Recipients spent an
   average of $29.00 over
   the original gift card value

•  Gift cards are the most 
   profitable square foot of 
   selling space at many 
   retail sites

•  Birthdays are the top
   purchase occasion for
   gift cards

•  61 percent of gift card
   purchases bought a card
   for a Christmas/Hanakkah

•  88 percent of gift card
   purchasers bought more
than one card

•  Consumers say PRICE will
play the biggest roll in
    their buying decisions this

•  40.0% says sales or
   promotions will be the
   largest factor affecting
   where they shop