The Rise of Digital Gift Giving and How Shopify Store Owners Can Leverage It

Skai Lama
September 19, 2023

In today's digitally-driven world, the way we express appreciation, love, and celebrate occasions has seen a dynamic shift. Recent statistics reveal that a staggering 70% of consumers now prefer selecting gifts online and there has been an 80% rise in global searches for online gifts. These statistics cannot be ignored and ecommerce stores need to ensure they capture the online gift market and employ digital gift card strategies for Shopify for improved revenue, new customer acquisition and even brand loyalty.

But why this surge? Here are a few reasons why shoppers are more willing to buy gifts online :

  • Convenience of one click shopping in a busy lifestyle
  • More options to choose from
  • Buyers can send gifts to someone they live far away from and even schedule delivery
  • Limited personalisation options in offline retail stores
  • Rise of personalised gift cards

For e-commerce stores, this trend is more than just a passing phase. With buyers wanting to delight their loved ones in a budget, they are only going to become more conscious of what they buy and from whom. Hence a store that provides a great gifting experience will be able to convert customers more easily and win in this growing market.

It is imperative for online stores to be 'gifting ready', ensuring they cater to the evolving preferences of their customers, making special moments even more memorable and hence increasing brand awareness and loyalty.

Consider the example of Starbucks, which managed to sell $3.3 billion worth of gift cards in a single quarter. Another great example of a brand that does digital gifting really well is Sephora. They have a dedicated landing page for gifts where they provide several relevant filters to choose the right gift and even have a gift finder and gift quiz. Given the wide range of products they have, they make gift selection super easy including offering pre-bundled gift sets.

Imagine the potential impact of implementing multiple gifting strategies on your online store. The possibilities for growth and customer engagement become manifolds.

Benefits of Digital Gift Giving for Online Stores

Increase Customer Loyalty

Imagine you run an online coffee bean store, and one of your customers sends a thoughtful gift to their coffee-loving friend from your shop. If that friend liked your coffee, the impact goes beyond a single sale. There’s a high chance that your customers will return to your store for more, thus cultivating loyalty.

Increase Customer Acquisition

Following the same example, the friend who received the coffee gift becomes your newest customer. And your original customer is likely to become an advocate for your brand because of the positive response. They’ll recommend your coffee beans as a perfect gift option to their friends, thus generating organic word-of-mouth referrals.

In this way, by delivering a great gifting experience, you not only acquire new customers but also benefit from the powerful marketing of satisfied customers.

In addition when you offer personalised gifting options like gift notes, video message or digital greeting cards that can be sent over emails, you end up collecting gift receiver emails for future marketing. A complete wn-win for you.

Increase Average Order Value (AOV)

When customers shop at your online store for gifts, they want to send more than just the product. Many customers like to add special touches like gift wrapping or a greeting card. It’s an opportunity for you to enhance the gifting experience in your store. You can give them the option to add a gift wrap or a greeting card at a nominal fee. This ensures that the gift arrives beautifully presented, making it even more memorable.

Additionally, consider gift add ons or upsells that make it easier for your customers to select the perfect gifts. For example, you can present a coffee mug or chocolates as an add on with your coffee beans, creating an even better coffee hamper. Customers are always willing to make the gifts better and by recommending quick gift add ons that are a no brainer, you can easily increase the AOV

Improve Cart Conversion

There are several ways you can improve your cart conversion with gifting:

  • Gift wrapping, personalised notes, or other gifting services often enhance the perceived value of the product, making customers more inclined to finalise their purchase. Also, gifting is often an emotional process. Features like a greeting card, personalised note or even a video message and a gift box enhance the emotional aspect of gifting thereby helping stores connect on an emotional level, leading to increased conversions.
  • Gift guides are a great way to reduce decision fatigue and ensure a purchase. By offering gift guides or personalised suggestions, you make the decision process simpler, speeding up the buying cycle and increasing the likelihood of a sale.
  • Offering e-gift cards or instant digital gifts can cater to last-minute shoppers, thereby converting potential drop-offs. In addition, if a shopper is unsure about size or colour, they may still opt for a gift card, ensuring a sale for the store.

8 Gifting Ideas to Enable on Your Shopify Store

Now that you know the benefits digital gift-giving can offer you, let’s talk about the gift options you can implement to grab those benefits for your store.

1. Gift Message and Greeting Cards

Let’s start with the obvious one. Customers love to write notes for their loved ones while gifting something. They like to mention the reason behind their gift and convey their emotions. To make the process even more personalised, consider offering a video option that allows customers to record their wishes.

Also, as discussed above this is the easiest way to collect a new customer information for marketing and ads. Not to mention, sending a personalised branded email with a gift note or greeting card from the sender is a great opportunity for you to start talking about the brand from the get go.

See below where one of our customers used Gift Lab, a Shopify app to power digital gift notes and greeting cards on their store.

The Rise of Digital Gift Giving and How Shopify Store Owners Can Leverage It

Another one of our Shopify brand offers occasion based branded greeting cards to further enhance the gifting experience.

2. Gift Wrap and Boxes

Another way to enhance the gifting experience for your customer is by offering options for gift wrapping and gift boxes. Take our customer Honeybug, for example, which provides the convenience of adding their signature gift wrapping for just $5. This not only boosts AOV but also adds a personal touch to the gifting process that customers appreciate. Gift boxes have the same effect and in fact make the gift more premium or luxurious.

3. Delivery Scheduler

Customers often want to surprise their loved ones on special occasions like birthdays or anniversaries. To make this easy for them, consider implementing a delivery scheduler. This handy feature allows customers to schedule their gifts in advance, ensuring they arrive on time for that memorable occasion.

Let’s take a look at Potato Parcel – they go the extra mile by not only allowing you to choose a shipping date but also providing assurance with additional delivery timeline information. This approach helps put the customer's mind at ease and contributes to an easy gifting experience impacting brand loyalty.

4. Gift Bundles

Gift Bundles are a great way to help shoppers pick gifts quickly. There are 2 ways to do this

1. Pre-curated Gift Bundles

Depending on the type and range of products you have, pre-curate gift bundles by occasion, age, price, gender etc. These are best when shoppers are in a hurry and want a quick in and out option. Make sure they are still thoughtful and provide a personalised experience of a gift note or greeting card. See below how one of our customers offers pre-curated bundles.

2. Build Your Own Gift Box

This allows you to offer your entire range of products In a linear step based approach delighting your customers with the experience of building a special gift with handpicked items.For eg. one of our Shopify brand offers the best build your own wine box experience for gifting. They have included steps to offer complimentary pairings, personalised engraving on the bottle, a wine box and even flowers. This level of personalisation can make a significant difference and set you apart from other online stores. Vyno uses our EasyBundles app to power build your own gift box on their Shopify store.

5. Gift Cards

Choosing the perfect gift can be challenging, and sometimes customers buy at the last moment. That's where Gift Cards come to the rescue. It is one of the new innovative digital gifting ideas but they're already a popular option among major brands like H&M and Starbucks for a good reason. With a gift card, you can simply let the recipient pick exactly what they desire. Plus, it's a win for you as it helps boost brand awareness and help you get more customers.

However you can set apart your store by offering personalised branded GiftCards, enhancing customer experience with Digital Gifts. See one of our Shopify brand owners who uses our app GiftKart to power not only personalised Gift Cards by occasion but also run bulk Gift Card campaigns for corporate gifts or other events seamlessly through the app.

All this not only help in boosting online sales with Gift Cards but also become an incentive for people to visit offline stores. You can increase the loyalty of your existing customers and gain new customers at a rapid pace with the right Shopify Gift Card marketing techniques in place.

6. Gift Guides

To simplify the gifting process for your customers, consider creating a gift guide. By doing so, you provide your customers with options while also making it straightforward for them to select the perfect gift.  For eg. Elf cosmetics has a separate guides and finder section with an award winning viral Tiktok make up gift guide. They combine the power of social media with a simple thing like gift guide and elevate the consumer experience to next level.

7. Personalized Gifts

Such gifts are not applicable to every online store but some stores can adopt this strategy. You can let your customers super-personalize gifts by offering to add a name or photo directly onto the product itself.

Consider Potato Parcel as an example – they allow customers to add their own or their friends' photos on a potato. This ultra-personalized and unique gift is likely to be valued for a long time. They charge a nominal fee of $4 for this service. You can consider adopting a similar approach for upselling personalization.

8. Corporate Gifting

Many organizations nowadays are aiming to gift their employees on special occasions. This market has only grown from $125 billion in 2019 to $242 billion in just 5 years. As an online retailer, you can capitalize on this opportunity by providing a corporate shopping feature.

For instance, Gold Medal Wine Club provides a corporate gifting option and goes the extra mile by assisting businesses in selecting the perfect gifts within their budget. This approach will bring you big orders, enhance your brand visibility, and increase your revenue.


It's worth noting that online searches for personalized gifts saw a remarkable 156% increase in 2022 compared to 2021. This highlights the growing demand for personalized gifting options.

The world of gifting has undergone a big change with the rise of digital gifting. Online stores are now a go-to platform for sending gifts. And as an online store owner, you should tap into this opportunity to grow your business.

Digital gift-giving offers many benefits to both customers and online store owners. Shoppers get a wide range of choices, easy customization, and the chance to send gifts without even stepping out of their homes. For online store owners, this trend means more loyal customers, more sales, higher order values, and more filled shopping carts.

But with all these changes, things can get a bit tricky for store owners. That's where GiftLabs comes in. It helps store owners easily add gifting features to their Shopify stores from gift notes, video messages, greeting cards, upsells to even creating beautiful personalised branded emails to deliver the best gifting experience.

You can also try the GiftKart app for a complete personalised Gift Card experience including bulk Gift Card campaigns and Cash backs. To offer build your own gift bundles try our EasyBundles app.

Reach out us on chat or book a quick meeting if you would like us to set up your store for a complete gifting experience. :)

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How can digital gift cards improve sales in my Shopify store?

Digital gift cards can boost sales in your Shopify store by attracting new customers, encouraging repeat business, and increasing average order value. They serve as a convenient gifting option, appealing to last-minute shoppers and those seeking flexibility in gift choices.

2. What are some unique digital gift card ideas for eCommerce?

Unique digital gift card ideas for eCommerce include personalized cards for special occasions, corporate gifting options, and incorporating interactive elements like video messages or themed designs. Offering customizable amounts and instant delivery can also add uniqueness.

3. How do digital gift cards enhance the online shopping experience?

Digital gift cards enhance the online shopping experience by providing convenience, flexibility, and personalization. They offer a stress-free solution for shoppers uncertain about specific preferences or sizes, and cater to last-minute needs with instant delivery.

4. What are the best ways to market digital gift cards on Shopify?

To market digital gift cards effectively on Shopify, leverage email marketing, social media campaigns, and website banners. Highlight them during holidays and special events, offer them as part of loyalty programs, and consider discounts or promotions to incentivize purchases.

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