News By Wire

Gift cards the key to creating a multi-channel business

With the high-street under increasing pressure to offer a flexible retail experience, new research has suggested that gift cards are becoming key components in creating a multi-channel business.

The State of the Nation 2022 research, carried out by the Gift Card & Voucher Association (GCVA) and GlobalData, found that consumer expectations around digital cards and multi-channel flexibility are continuing to increase, with two-fifths (40.8%) of consumers now expecting all gift cards to be multi-channel in the future. An expectation that is notably higher among younger consumers, with this sentiment highest among the Millennials.

The research revealed a 13% increase in the expectation for gift cards to be multi-channel, when compared to 28% of gift card buyers in 2020, showing that gift cards are becoming a key asset for customers to be able to shop in-store and online.

The continued rise of digital gifting methods during the pandemic has led a significant number of shoppers to now expect all gift cards to be available in both digital and physical formats, increasing from 26.2% in 2020 to 40.8% in 2022.

Much of this shift towards an expectation of multi-channel shopping, with gift cards as a central link between them, is driven by young people. Gen Z (shoppers aged 16-24) and Gen X (aged 35-54) purchased a similar amount of gift cards, with 46% having bought a gift card in the last three years. When compared to Baby Boomers (aged 55+), less than a third (32%) had bought a gift card in the last three years.

Gail Cohen, director general of the GCVA, commented: “Lockdowns have fundamentally changed the expectations of customers, who now favour a choice across multiple channels. Gift cards that can give customers this choice are one of the best solutions for businesses that allow them to link their bricks and mortar offering with their e-commerce store is using gift cards.

“The beauty of gift cards is that they can be used across all channels. For businesses it is a great way of both strengthening their brand and also retaining customers by creating a seamless experience. As we move towards a cashless system, the lure of the gift card, from both a consumer and business perspective, becomes more and more enticing.”

Press release information


Image File:


Area / Region:

Topics / Tags:

Notes to editors

Notes to Editors For additional details, please contact: Steve Leigh and Asha Hipperson at PR Agency One T: 0161 871 9140 E: [email protected] Key findings from the State of the Nation 2022 research: • An average of 7.7% of consumers per month purchased a gift card for themselves over 2021 vs. 6.4% over 2020, with significantly higher purchase propensity among younger age cohorts. • Gift card purchasing was boosted by retailer stock issues in 2021, with an average of 35.8% of gift card purchasers over Q4 stating it was easier to buy a gift card than a physical gift. • Gift card buying was up over Christmas 2021, with 27.1% of shoppers buying a gift card for someone else over December 2021, compared to 25.2% in 2020. • Consumer expectations around digital cards and cross-channel flexibility continue to increase; 40.8% of consumers expect all gift cards to be cross-channel in the future. • Physical gift cards bounced back strongly in 2021, as stores re-opened; across the year, a monthly average of 47.4% of gift card buyers purchased physical gift cards instore vs. 43.4% in 2020. • Gift cards are increasingly seen as a tool to support local businesses and high streets; 28.8% of monthly gift card purchasers in 2021 said supporting local businesses was a motivation, compared to 24.5% of purchasers in 2020. • Over half of all those receiving gift cards over the past three years have been introduced to a new brand or organisation via the format. About the GCVA The Gift Card & Voucher Association ( was established as a trade body to represent the key players in what is today a £7 billion gift card and stored value solutions market. With 95 members representing key retailers, issuers and suppliers the GCVA provides an information and reference point for the Gift Card & Voucher industry and is at the forefront of the issues affecting the industry. Its main objective is to provide a platform and infrastructure for the industry and to raise the profile and use of gift cards and vouchers within the UK, promoting the industry to consumers, businesses, government and other interested parties. The GCVA is the key industry organisation to share new ideas, innovate and promote best practice with the UK gift card and voucher industry. It runs a programme of events, meetings, research projects and updates throughout the year, including its flagship Conference. The industry event of the year, the GCVA Conference returned in person, in a brand new venue, in London, on 2-3 March 2022. The GCVA conference is the highlight of the industry calendar and provides the platform to bring all major players across the UK and international gift card community, together. For two action-packed days, delegates will be immersed in the gift card eco-system, comprising: A UK & global retail space; industry innovation; consumer needs, evolving marketing strategies; hot topics; market trends, inspirational speakers, exhibition hall and the very best networking opportunities.

Media contact

Media contact name:

Asha Hipperson

Media contact business / organisation:

PR Agency One

Media contact telephone:


Media contact email:

All done!
Thank you for subscribing.

Email Subscription