Gift cards have become an essential revenue stream for many restaurants. Here are a few notable statistics from a recent restaurant gift card sales report

  • The total overall number of gift cards sold in 2021 increased by 22% year over year. 
  • Digital sales were at their highest ever in 2021.
  • In-store sales held the biggest share of all restaurant cards sold in 2021, accounting for 45% of all cards sold. 

In addition to experiencing how gift cards can help navigate challenging economic seasons, restaurant managers have also seen the ways in which a solid gift card program can help reach new customers and increase loyalty with frequent customers. Since gift cards are an essential part of any restaurant business strategy, it’s essential to find the right gift card partner for you. 

How to Find the Best Gift Card Partner for Your Restaurant

Whether you’re a local establishment or a chain restaurant with locations across the country, here are five important factors to consider to help you find the best gift card partner for your business:

1. Find a gift card provider partner who can help you design a gift card that matches your brand.

Everything you do to engage your customers impacts their perception of your restaurant, including your gift cards. Whether you are designing physical gift cards to sell in-store or building an online portal to sell gift cards on your website, it’s important to create a gift card that matches your brand identity. You want to create a seamless brand experience for your customers. 

For many of our customers, selling virtual and physical gift cards with customized packaging designed for their brand is a game-changer for their gift card program. 

2. Find a partner who knows best practices to help you promote your gift cards. 

The last thing managers want is to purchase a bulk order of gift cards only to have them sit on the shelf. That’s why it’s helpful to find a gift card supplier that is just as passionate about helping you sell your gift cards. 

At Card Market, we’re dedicated to helping our merchants create an effective gift card program that drives results. Our team has created a variety of tools to help you effectively promote your gift cards. We’ve shared best practices about where to place your gift cards in your restaurant and a comprehensive marketing guide to gift card sales. We’ve even identified a few outside-the-box ideas to promote gift cards that have worked really well for our restaurant customers. 

3. Find a partner who can help you proactively prepare for busy gift card seasons. 

The holiday season is the busiest time of year for gift card sales. In fact, 45% of all 2021 gift card sales occurred during the holiday season. The holidays are also a hectic season for restaurants in general. That’s why it’s important to find a partner who can help you plan your holiday gift card strategy early. Find a gift card provider who is proactive about marketing to help to plan for a successful holiday season.

4. Find a partner who can grow with your business.

Owning or managing a restaurant is tough. You operate on tight margins. You’re constantly facing challenges around employees and food costs. And if you’re opening new locations, you need a gift card provider that can scale with your business as you grow. 

At Card Market, we offer multiple gift card solutions to meet the needs of our clients. One of the things we enjoy most about our work is partnering with clients year after year and expanding our services to support their needs as their business grows. 

5. Find a provider who can do more than gift cards.

One final factor in choosing the best gift card partner is to consider the other card solutions they provide, such as loyalty cards. Finding a partner who can equip your restaurant with more than gift cards has become an increasingly important trend as more restaurants have pivoted to contactless technology in recent years. 

Discover the Difference Card Market Can Make for Your Restaurant

As a leading gift card partner for restaurants across the country, we care about helping restaurants succeed. Our team can maximize the power of gift cards and loyalty cards for your promotional opportunities. Contact us today to learn to discuss which products are best suited for your business, as well as a variety of data and finishing options.