Guide to choosing a digital gift card provider

Insights
Posted on 15 March 2022 Read time 4 mins
Author Andy Pickard

What is a digital gift card provider? 

A digital gift card provider - also known as a digital gift card aggregator - enables you to purchase digital gift cards at scale.

You might be wondering why you’d need to purchase digital gift cards in bulk in the first place? 

Many organisations use digital gift cards to reward and incentivise employees and customers, and drive loyalty across a range of different applications. 

B2B use cases for digital gift cards are growing. According to the GCVA, in the first half of 2021, digital gift cards dominated once again, representing 75% of the market and growing 26% on a like-for-like basis. 

You can use a digital gift card platform to make bulk gift card purchases and get digital gift cards on demand. 

Before digital gift card aggregators came about, brands would have to manage their relationship with each retailer they wanted to partner with separately. This would require:

  • Lengthy spreadsheets and emails back and forth to manage floats and stock (which was not very secure)
  • Separate contracts with each individual retailer and region
  • Hiring team members to manage the process manually
  • It took days not seconds to get codes

 

Digital gift card providers save you time and resources, enabling you to manage the process through a single platform. 

In the blog, we share some top tips to help you assess what kind of capabilities you require from a digital gift card provider. 

How to choose a digital gift card provider: 5 factors to consider 

 

1. Do you need a one-off bulk purchase or an integration? 

Depending on your rewards, incentives and loyalty needs, you might need to integrate your own loyalty platform with a gift card platform through an API - which will enable instant gift card purchases. 

A digital gift card provider isn’t the platform that your customers would interact with; instead your existing platform would integrate with it behind the scenes. 

Integrating with a digital gift card provider should also enable you to get exclusive brand discounts and favourable commercial terms, some of which you may choose to share with your end user - giving them digital gift cards at a discounted rate.

Or, if you’re just making a single brand bulk purchase, it’s unlikely you’ll need to integrate with a platform - you can simply purchase your digital gift card codes in bulk and distribute these to your employees or customers. However, these types of purchase don’t usually qualify for discounted rates on gift cards; you’ll likely get them at face value. 

 

2. How broad is the digital gift card provider’s network? 

Depending on your gift card use cases, you’ll likely want to find a provider that has an extensive network of brands across a range of industries - including big name brands as well as some that are slightly more niche.

In particular, if you need digital gift cards to reward customer loyalty, having more options for users to choose from when they cash out their loyalty points will make your loyalty currency more valuable.

In fact, 72% of consumers are more likely to be loyal to a brand if it offers a personalised experience with additional rewards and benefits. 

And making your loyalty programme offering more diverse with a broader range of brands to cash-out onto will drive customer acquisition and increased customer engagement. 

 

3. Can you enable new markets easily? 

Most Enterprises with a loyalty programme will be looking to switch on new markets at the click of a button. 

Ensure your gift card aggregator enables you to scale quickly and easily - and has popular brands available for the regions where you’re looking to expand.

If your current provider doesn’t currently serve an area that’s crucial for your business, consider asking them if they’d be willing to look at expanding their offering there. 

 

4. Ease of integration 

If you need to connect to a provider’s API, ensure you look for a provider that will offer first-class customer support - and be able to streamline the process for your technical team. 

Does the provider have a product roadmap? And are they regularly updating the platform and releasing new features? 

Best-in-class platforms should be fairly light-touch to integrate with and give you access to a support team and helpful documentation. Great support is particularly important - it’s a fact of life that sometimes things hit a bump, and you want to partner with a platform that wants to help you get over that.

 

5. Think about user experience 

Usability is key when it comes to selecting your digital gift card provider; this isn’t your primary role so you and your team need a platform that’s easy to use and requires very little training. 

Look out for a clear and simple user interface that's easy to navigate and understand.

Also consider the reporting functionality. Opt for a platform that enables instant, transparent access to live data and invaluable audience insights at your fingertips, keeping you in control of your budgets and one step ahead. 

Choosing a platform that’s self service is crucial as you don’t want to be calling up for every minor change that’s needed and you want to be able to easily manage your float. In fact, Tillo recently enabled a new HSBC integration to speed the float top up process for our customers.

 

The Tillo difference

Tillo is the digital gift card platform for fast-growing organisations wanting to acquire new customers, retain existing ones and unlock new ways of rewarding and incentivising using digital gift cards. 

We do this by connecting brands that people love to our partners through one award-winning API platform with unrivalled user-experience across multiple markets at scale. One contract. One integration. Just plug-and-go.

We’re the largest digital gift card provider in the UK, and connect our partners to 2,000+ retailers globally; we operate in 34 markets, across 16 currencies.  

One thing that helps us stand-out against other providers is our unmatched customer experience, from onboarding to enabling new regions and beyond - we care about making the process a delight from start to finish. 

“The whole team loves using Tillo, the system does exactly what we need” - Stuart Lawrence, Business Development Director at GiftCloud

If you have any questions or are looking for a digital gift card provider, you can book a demo

Take a look at how Quidco is using Tillo here: 

HubSpot Video

 

Tillo dots icon

Sign-up to our mailing list for the latest rewards, incentives & gifting insights