What are gift cards?
Gift cards are payment codes that store prepaid funds in a virtual card balance. Your customers or business clients who receive a gift card can then use it to pay for part of or the full checkout balance at your webshop. With the gift card system, we'll directly connect you with Intersolve, the largest Dutch gift card issuer with an extensive network of brands under its belt. Intersolve can help you get set up with issuing physical or virtual gift cards and even your own branded card.
Merchants can enjoy:
- Increased brand awareness: As people purchase more gift cards to give to their friends on anniversaries, birthdays, and holidays, your brand continues to circulate among new customers with little marketing efforts.
- More revenue: Apart from receiving revenue upfront, gift cardholders usually will spend more than the gift card amount while using it.
Customers can enjoy:
- Extra convenience: Consumers can pay effortlessly and can quickly make purchase decisions.
- Higher satisfaction: Customers who have a great experience with using gift cards in your webshop are likely to walk away happy with a great perception of your brand.
How do gift cards work?
Once gift cards are ready to go in your payment gateway, your customers will see a field to enter the gift card bar code. If the card holds a sufficient balance, the customer can either partially or fully pay for the order. Whatever amount of funds they choose will then be deducted from the card's original amount.
If the customer is lucky enough to have multiple cards, they can keep using them to complete the order. If there is a remaining amount that still needs paying, the customer can progress using their preferred payment method.
There are two types of gift card systems that you can offer:
Open-Loop Gift Cards:
Open-loop gift cards allow customers to use them anywhere that also accepts credit cards like Visa and Mastercard. For example, if a customer has a Visa gift card, it can be spent with any merchant with Visa credit and debit in their payment mix.
Open-loop gift cards tend to be more attractive for customers as they offer more flexibility on where they can be used. If you decide to go with open-loop, you'll have options for the following programs:
Restricted Gift Card Program
An open-loop restricted gift card processes on credit card networks such as Visa or Mastercard. A restricted gift card usually will have a cap on the number of funds added and can be limited to work at designated business locations, such as a shopping mall.
Unrestricted Gift Card Program
The open-loop unrestricted card is similar to the restricted gift card program but without the limitations.
Closed-Loop Gift Cards:
With closed-loop gift cards, the holder can only spend their gift card with the merchant it was purchased from. As an example, a gift card that's exclusive to Cool Blue is considered a closed-loop. These cards usually benefit retail merchants, as customers can't redeem the gift card anywhere else.
Having a closed-loop gift card program in place won't restrict you from also partaking in an open-loop gift card program.
Either way, your customers will always be treated to the same experience when they reach the checkout.
1. At the checkout, the customer enters the gift card bar code.
2. The balance is checked to see if there are sufficient funds on the card and if there needs to be more than one payment transaction.
3. If there are sufficient funds, they're deducted from the order purchase amount. If needed, the customer then pays any outstanding funds.
How to accept gift cards as payment?
Whichever type of gift card program you choose, with Payvision, you can process online payments for gift cards in your payment provided by Intersolve. However, you'll need to complete an onboarding process with Intersolve first.
Once complete, our robust and straightforward API lets you integrate gift cards into your payment gateway quickly and easily.
Check out all the documentation you need to get gift cards involved in your payment gateway. If you have any questions, our dedicated support team is on hand to help.