Gift vouchers are a handy tool for increasing sales and are used by retailers in various fields, from jewelry to the average grocery supermarket. In fact, they are a deposit of money, in which the certificate holder can choose something to his or her liking. In some sectors, the profit from gift certificates is up to 5% of the total turnover: and this is a decent share of profit, which is not worth losing.
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Why do I need a certificate?
When there is a severe shortage of time, a gift certificate becomes a great way to make a small gift to a loved one, friend, or colleague. At the same time, for business, the provision of such an opportunity provides several advantages:
- Increased customer loyalty, which increases the likelihood of returning to the store, making purchases in the future;
- Increase in sales volume, since statistically about 2/3 of all certificates are defrayed on a large amount with a surcharge on the spot (at the same time, if the price of goods is less, the difference between it and the face value of the certificate “burns out”, so it’s worth wisely combine pricing policy and to determine the face value of the certificate);
- Advertising of a brand, because a much larger number of people learn about a store or a chain;
- Opportunity to promote a product and expand the sphere of business (information about an additional discount, new service, etc. can easily be placed on the certificate).
As a result, the availability of such an opportunity becomes one of the universal marketing solutions in today’s retail market.
A gift card or certificate?
The alternative to a gift card is a plastic card. They are not fundamentally different, giving the customer the opportunity to make a purchase for a certain amount, but there are a couple of secondary points:
- The certificate is usually made on cardboard or heavy paper, and the card is made on plastic, which makes the latter more expensive (moreover, the certificate can often be made and printed by yourself, while with plastic this will not work);
- The card can be reused by programming it to the right amount, which can be relevant for a large network where such transactions are frequent;
- The card has a small format, where you can not put a lot of information (to prevent this it is often accompanied by a small paper booklet, which is not very convenient).
At the same time, both the card and the gift certificate can be set as an individual numbers to track usage, control the expiration date and attempt counterfeiting. A universal option here would be to create an automated accounting system. In addition, a frequent condition for the validity of the certificate is the presence of the attached original cash receipt, the seal of the store where it was purchased, along with the signature of the person in charge.
How to make a gift certificate?
If we are talking about paper versions, you can create them completely by yourself, which will save money. First of all, you need to decide on their denomination. The optimal solution would be 3-4 versions, because a larger number of options confuses the person, and a small number limits the possibilities.
The cost of the certificate can be determined on the basis of the average check in the store. For example, if it is 600 rubles, then you can consider denominations of 1000, 2000 and 5000. It does not make sense to go below the average level, because such certificates are usually given for any holidays, and the amount there will obviously be higher than the average because of the desire to make a good present.
Choose the format of the gift certificate
The second important point before you decide to create a gift certificate will be to determine its size. It simultaneously should not be very small, so that the gift was noticeable visually, and not very big because it will be difficult to keep and carry in your bag. A great option here is a postcard from a sheet of A4 paper. As an argument we will cite:
- The possibility of printing on standard sheets and an ordinary printer;
- After folding in half such a card is easy to fit in a typical handbag and with a high-quality design will look quite presentable;
- It is possible to place the full amount of information (however, we recommend not to abuse it).
It is better to use quality paper with a density of 150 g/m2 for printing, which will prevent its wrinkling and loss of marketable appearance. You should also pay attention to the choice between matte and glossy versions. You should create a really attractive gift, which will look presentable. If you are planning to design a regular certificate, then the format A5 (a standard sheet cut into two parts) is quite suitable.
Decide on the information on the certificate
To get a stylish look for your certificate, you need to stick to the principle of minimalism. If you want to make a gift certificate online, it is enough to place the following information on it:
- name of the brand;
- the face value of the gift certificate;
- the certificate number and expiration date;
- contact information (store address, phone number, links to social networks as a QR-code, etc.);
The last two items can be placed on the last page or in a separate insert. If there is enough space on the certificate (e.g., it is in the form of a postcard), then the first option is preferable.
We work out the design
An important step in creating a gift certificate is the initial design of the layout. You can go to a specialized workshop or freelancers, but if you have the inspiration and desire, you can do it yourself. The second option is especially relevant for small stores that do not have much profit to hire professional graphic designers.
When developing the layout, you need to use a logo and corporate colors, as well as “traditional” brand fonts. If all of this is not available, you can use specialized services like Turbologo, which will offer several dozen logos, font and color options to choose from.
To make a certificate, you can use one of the many online services, mastering which takes literally a few minutes due to the simplicity of the interface. Among the most popular options are:
- Canva is one of today’s most well-known editors. It offers a lot of paid and free templates that can be edited by adding graphics and text and illustrations. Then it is enough to download the finished work to your hard drive and print it.
- 123certificates – here you will find general and thematic templates (for example, you can make a gift certificate online for New Year’s celebrations) with the possibility of further personalization.
- Adobe Spark – is a very handy tool to develop a stylish design. You start by choosing the size of the certificate and then select a suitable template, select a photo, and make other adjustments.
- Crello is a simple online editor, which has found a place for the basic functions and a large number of standard templates. With the service, you can easily tweak the information on the certificate, change the layout of elements, add effects, etc.
The final step is printing the ready template in the nearest printing house. After receiving the ready certificates, you can immediately launch advertising through all available channels.
I’m a product and graphic designer with 10-years background. Writing about branding, logo creation and business.