Last minute shoppers often resort to eGift cards when they run out of time or don’t know what to buy. And let’s face it, eGift cards have their advantages, most notably, they are fast and convenient. Forgot to purchase and send a gift to your mother-in-law for her birthday? Simply send an eGift card, it will arrive on time and there aren’t even any shipping costs.
Plastic gift cards are more like cash. If you lose the card, you lose your gift and anyone who finds it can access the money loaded on the gift card. eGift cards are emailed and therefore there is always a record of them and who they were sent to. eGift cards that can be redeemed directly from your smartphone are perfect for people who tend to lose things as it is impossible to misplace them, and they are also great for anyone who loves technology and the idea of a cashless society. But while an eGift card may be a quick and convenient solution to your gift problem, you do need to be aware of the risks associated with these cards.
The Risks of Buying an eGift Card
Unfortunately, gift card fraud in all forms is on the rise and while buying eGift cards may be a safer option, it is still not completely safe. As with any form of e-commerce, hacking is an ever-present threat and it is easy for gift card fraudsters to get information from online transactions and most retailers are one step behind the hackers and still working on ways to make eGift card transactions safer and more secure.
To protect yourself, before you purchase an eGift card you need to check the HTTPS URL prefix to make sure that the website is secure. Also, look at the site’s privacy and security policy for details on how they protect your personal and financial information and to see what level of encryption they are using. It is also an advantage if you can change the password or even the PIN of the eGift card once you have purchased it. Of course, e-Gift cards can also inadvertently be emailed to the wrong address or go astray on the internet. When you send an eGift card it is important to make sure that you have the correct email address for the recipient, and you should always call or email to let them know that you have sent them an eGift card. Lastly, always remember to check the balance on the eGift card as soon as you have purchased it.
Why Plastic Gift Cards Can be Safer
While eGift cards may be quick and convenient, they are not always the most personal gifts and plastic gift cards have their own advantages. A physical gift card may not be as personal as many other types of gifts, but it is still more personal than an eGift card. You can wrap a plastic gift card and include a personal handwritten note. Many gift cards now come with seasonal packaging and stores often sell small tins or specially designed boxes to put the card in to make it more personal. Gift cards are also easy to mail to friends who live far away, and most people still love getting a package to open on their birthday. Physical gift cards are also more tradeable than eGift cards and there are various sites where you can trade a gift card that you will never use for one that you will use.
Whether you are buying an eGift card or a physical gift card it is always important to read the fine print. Check if the card has an expiry date so that you can remind your loved ones to use the card before it expires. Even with more retailers offering eGift cards, the demand for high-quality physical gift cards is increasing and QuickCards can help you find the best solution for your retail business.