The months of May and June are good for giftcard issuers because they contain three gift giving occasions:Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and most school graduations. Issuerstell Mercator Advisory Group that the so-called ‘Grads and Dads’season is the second most active gift card sales period in theyear. The first, of course, are the holidays in the fourthquarter.
Based on information from Mercator’s closed-loop card benchmarkcombined with aggregated data from Vantiv, Mercator estimates thatthe total load on gift cards in the United States in the 2013 Moms,Dads, and Grads (Mercator will expand its title to include themothers) season totaled about $13.1 billion. That was up 4 percentfrom 2012.
While loads vary by retailer type, an opportunity clearly existsfor issuers to use this period to boost sales. There is a thirdactive selling season, though it tends to be even more specific,and that is the back-to-school season in late August and earlySeptember. While this tends to be a time for office supply storesand electronics stores to market heavily, apparel and othermerchants have a chance to add another spike to their sales, evenif it is a smaller one. We hope to examine the size of this salesperiod later this fall.
This is the second in an occasional series of updates on theclosed-loop market that Mercator Advisory Group will produce incollaboration with Vantiv. This information will be published onPaymentsJournal. You can read the first installment on holidayloads from 2102 here.
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