Gift Card Industry News

Reflections From the Retail Gift Card Association Forum: A Fast-Changing Landscape

Karl Tapales
December 14, 2021

In late October, I had the opportunity to moderate a panel at the Retail Gift Card Association Forum (RGCA), the premier annual event in the gift card industry, where senior executives from Panera, Disney, Inspire Brands, and Best Buy joined me in discussing the fast-changing gift card landscape...  Read the full article now...

People are fighting back against gift card scammers. Here's how

Ian Sherr
November 30, 2021

With few safeguards in place to protect you and me from gift card scams, some people are filling in the gaps. Read the full article now... 

Gift card scams are growing, and we're all paying the price

Ian Sherr
November 25, 2021

Every year, scammers trick Americans into handing over millions of dollars in gift card payments... Read the full article now...

Supply-Chain Crisis Is Bad for iPhone, Great for Gift Cards

Amelia Pollard and Augusta Saraiva, Yahoo! 
October 18, 2021 

In an economy hamstrung by all types of global supply-chain snarls, a mounting product shortages - even Apple is reportedly slashing production - are making giving gift cards a fail-safe way to ensure there are presents under the Christmas tree. Read the full article now...

Once a holiday staple, gift cards are now viewed as a stop gap for inventory shortages 

Saqib Shah, ModernRetail 
October 18, 2021

Faced with acute product shortages, retailers are incorporating the humble gift card into their outsized holiday rescue efforts. Read the full article now...

A large chunk of the retail investing crowd started during the pandemic, Schwab survey 

Maggie Fitzgerald, CNBC
April 8, 2021

The pandemic spurred a flood of new retail investors into the stock market, and a survey from Charles Schwab attempts to estimate the size of this new generation of traders. Read the full article now...

Mastercard report reveals massive pandemic-driven shift to ecommerce

Adriana Nunez, eMarketer
April 8, 2021

Mastercard’s Recovery Insights report highlighted the scale of the pandemic-driven digital shift in 2020—as well as what to expect going forward. Read the full article now...

Major Brands Lag on Mobile Acceptance Despite a Drive for Contactless, a Study Finds

John Stewart, Digital Transactions
March 24, 2021

After the pandemic struck a year ago, stores scrambled to install technology to support a wide range of payment options, including tap-and-pay, to reassure skittish consumers. But now a new report indicates those efforts may not have gone as far as many have assumed, particularly in the area of contactless payments. Read the full article now...

Restaurant Habits In The Post-COVID Future, By The Numbers

March 24, 2021

The last year has been difficult, often even devastating, for restaurants, but alongside these challenges came a huge outpouring of innovation, with many restaurants implementing new digital technologies and operational solutions to carry them through the year. As restaurants pivoted, so did consumers, adopting new ordering technologies and dining routines to enjoy restaurant-cooked meals whenever possible. Read the full article now...

How Target's omni-channel leap of faith 5 years ago set it up for retail's COVID crisis and beyond

Stuart Lauchlan, Diginomica
March 3, 2021

In 2016, US retailer Target set off on an omni-channel transformation journey that 'loved the store'; in 2020, that foresight paid off during the COVID crisis. Read the full article now...

Gift Cards Become Employee COVID Vaccination Incentives

February 25, 2021

The vaccines are here, and while rolling them out has presented some logistical hurdles across the country, employers have been ramping up efforts to get their respective workforces vaccinated in the bid to return to (some semblance of) normal. Some have even extended financial rewards to do so. Read the full article now...

Ecommerce helped uplift retail in 2020—and it could be the key to merchant success in 2021 and beyond

Adriana Nunez, Business Insider
February 24, 2021

Total ecommerce sales in 2020 jumped 32.4% year over year (YoY), reaching a whopping $791.7 billion, according to the latest data from the US Census Bureau. Ecommerce sales accounted for 14% of total retail sales last year—marking an increase from the 11% it made up in 2019. Read the full article now...

5 creative ways malls are repurposing their space

Kaarin Vembar, Retail Dive
February 9, 2021

The traditional concept of the mall is fading away. Once an epicenter of the suburban lifestyle, the shopping mall's purpose and importance have slowly been transforming... Read the full article now...

CEO of America’s biggest mall owner says some retailers are excited for growth opportunities in 2021

Lauren Thomas, CNBC
February 8, 2021

Simon Property Group, the biggest mall owner in the country, is expecting this year to be better than last, as some retailers start to think about opening new stores in its malls, and tenants are in a better position to pay their rent on time... Read the full article now...

42% of retailers expect to restructure as industry revenue declines persist, BDO says

Ben Unglesbee, Retail Dive
January 25, 2021

BDO's CFO survey makes clear that many of the struggles of 2020 are likely to continue through the new year... Read the full article now...

9 retail trends to watch in 2021

Daphne Howland, Retail Dive
January 12, 2021

The pandemic's arrival in March 2020 meant that it didn't make Retail Dive's trends to watch last year, but it completely upended all expectations for the year... Read the full article now...

COVID brings an explosion in ecommerce, but high volume of stalled carts causes concern

Stafana Ivan, The Paypers
January 11, 2021

While many businesses have floundered during the pandemic, the regulatory response has created an environment for tech companies to flourish... Read the full article now...

5 Retail Insights from a Covid Christmas

Armando Roggio, Practical Ecommerce
December 30, 2020

Holiday consumer spending offers insights into the retail industry, including ecommerce’s continued growth, consumer spending, and customer relationships. 2020 has been extraordinary... Read the full article now...

E-commerce: The Trend that Dominated Retail in 2020

December 24, 2020

At the end of 2019, no one could have predicted the trends that would emerge in U.S. retail during 2020. From the panic-induced hoarding of toilet paper in March to a slew of bankruptcies among depart… Read the full article now...

6 Tips to Safeguard your Gift Cards

November 4, 2020

Gift cards are safe and convenient payment and gift options—evident by their widespread popularity and use. But, when shoppers don’t know the right prevention techniques, criminals can abuse gift cards, just as they can abuse debit cards, credit cards, or checks. Here are six tips to safeguard your gift cards: 

Gift Card Scam Protections on the Daily Show

The Daily Show
December 4, 2020

Learn about new holiday scams and gift card scams to watch out for in 2020. Watch the full video now...

What a vaccine could mean for retail

Daphne Howland, Retail Dive
November 10, 2020

"There's finally hope of an end to a pandemic that has destroyed lives and livelihoods, and upended consumer behavior. For now, uncertainty still rules." Read the full article now...

12 ways to prevent fraud during the COVID‑driven ecommerce boom

Don Davis, Digital Commerce 360
November 10, 2020

"The spike in U.S. online shopping since the COVID-19 outbreak that forced many physical stores to close in March has created big sales opportunities for online retailers, but also challenges in deterring fraud." Read the full article now...

Pandemic Expected to Dent Holiday Shopping Spending 20 Percent

Rebecca Baird-Remba, Commercial Observer
November 10, 2020

"The brokerage’s retail research team explained that the projected decline is consistent with shoppers shifting their overall habits during the pandemic toward essentials like groceries and home improvement items..." Read the full article now... 

Blackhawk Network Acquires NGC

Blackhawk Network
November 6, 2020

"Today, global branded payments provider Blackhawk Network announced that it has completed its acquisition of National Gift Card (NGC), one of North America's largest card and prepaid technology companies." Read the full article now...

E-Commerce Marketing: Preparing For The New Wave Of Customers

Mat Zucker, Forbes
November 1, 2020

"E-commerce shopping has steadily grown, even accelerated due to Coronavirus, expected to reach $4.2 billion globally in 2020 (Statista) and be more than 16% of global retail sales." Read the full article now...

Holiday shoppers are crossing themselves off of the gift list, trade group says

Melissa Repko, CNBC
October 21, 2020

"As holiday shoppers look for gifts, they plan to spend less overall and pull back on purchases for themselves, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation." Read the full article now...

Digital payments can bring reassurance post-COVID-19

William Girling, FinTech
October 16, 2020

"Motivated by their first-hand experiences of—what they perceived as—exorbitant transaction charges while on abroad, James Lynn and Craig Goulding, both experienced investment bankers, founded Currensea as a 'smarter way to pay overseas'." Read the full article now...

Black Friday is over: Here’s why retailers are touting weeks of deals this year

Lauren Thomas and Melissa Repko, CNBC
October 2, 2020

Black Friday has been losing its clout for years. The coronavirus pandemic could be what finishes it. The one-day event of doorbuster deals, packed mall parking lots and crowded shops has long been considered the unofficial kickoff to the holiday shopping season." Read the full article now...

E-Commerce Sales Will Explode This Holiday Season, Putting Retailers’ Online Strategies To The Test

Pamela N. Danziger, Forbes
September 27, 2020

While we await the National Retail Federation’s holiday retail forecast – which will come any day – Deloitte and Forrester are out with their predictions for holiday 2020 and year-end." Read the full article now...

Online Gift Card Sales Soar As Pandemic Restrictions Send Consumers to Their Laptops

Steve Cocheo, The Financial Brand
September 9, 2020

The pandemic has sparked a huge lift in online gift card sales as consumers make shopping for the plastic part of their e-commerce routine." Read the full article now...

From free rent to gift cards, landlords are trying to entice renters with bargains

Katie Park, The Philadelphia Inquirer
September 7, 2020

Touted as a boutique luxury apartment building in the nexus of a tony suburb just outside Philadelphia, the Delwyn in Bala Cynwyd planned to open in the spring and charge as much as $2,430 a month for its biggest units." Read the full article now...

COVID-19 pandemic accelerated shift to e-commerce by 5 years, new report says

Sarah Perez, Tech Crunch
August 28, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic reshapes our world, more consumers have begun shopping online in greater numbers and frequency." Read the full article now...

More Consumers Prefer Contactless Payments for Pandemic Purchases

Steve Cocheo, The Financial Brand
August 27, 2020

Fears of catching coronavirus from surfaces like point-of-sale card readers and keyboards have favored growth in contactless card and mobile wallet transactions." Read the full article now...

July retail sales were OK. August may be another story.

Daphne Howland, Retail Dive
August 14, 2020

Retailers may have breathed a sigh of relief in July as their customers returned to stores with their wallets open." Read the full article now...

Discerning the impact of Covid-19 on fintech firms and their role in financial inclusion

August 13, 2020

While the fintech industry is still evolving, the evidence so far indicates that it has a key role to play in financial inclusion, according to Ana Fiorella Carvajal, lead financial sector expert at World Bank." Read the full article now...

Can summer BOPIS practices forecast holiday trends?

Tatiana Walk-Morris, Retail Dive
August 6, 2020

Erik's Bike Shop already offered buy online, pick up in-store for several years, a service that was seldom used before the COVID-19 pandemic. Then came the coronavirus." Read the full article now...

Apple Sued Over Alleged $1 Billion App Store And iTunes Card Scam

Davey Winder, Forbes
July 27, 2020

You might well think that if asked to pay outstanding taxes by way of App Store and iTunes gift cards, well, you'd be just a little suspicious that all was not above board."  Read the full article now...

Digital Wallet Adoption Surges Across Eight Markets; Digital Gift Cards See Boost from Self-Use, According to Blackhawk Network's 2020 Multinational BrandedPay™ Report

Blackhawk Network
July 23, 2020

Today, branded payments provider Blackhawk Network released its 2020 Multinational BrandedPay report revealing a surge in digital wallet adoption with 88% of surveyed shoppers in eight markets using a digital wallet of some kind." Read the full article now...

$20 Gift Cards To Be Offered For Coronavirus Contact Tracing Efforts In L.A. County

Louie Diaz, Hometown Station
July 21, 2020

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is set to offer $20 gift cards to individuals infected with the coronavirus if they participate in contact tracing, officials said Tuesday." Read the full article now...

Back-to-school spending could hit a record as parents buy costly technology for kids at home

Lauren Thomas, CNBC

July 15, 2020

"Parents may not yet know whether their children will be sitting in a classroom, or at the dining room table, when classes resume later this year." Read the full article now...

6 steps for retailers in this crisis and the next

Ed Valdez, Retail Customer Experience

June 23, 2020

"The global challenges unfolding across the country in the past few weeks have presented a huge humanitarian and economic challenge." Read the full article now...

eCommerce Takes Half Of Pandemic-Driven Retail Growth


June 17, 2020

"The dramatic consumer shift to Digital 3.0—predicted months ago by the PYMNTS COVID-19 tracker work—is accounting for almost half of the retail growth in the US." Read the full article now...

‘Pent-up demand’ and ‘revenge shopping’ are driving U.S. retail and restaurant spending

Katie Park, The Philadelphia Inquirer

June 17, 2020

"National retail and restaurant spending jumped dramatically in May as stores and dining began to reopen across parts of the country during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a preliminary sales report from the U.S. Commerce Department released Tuesday." Read the full article now...

National Retail Federation Talks About Covid-19 Impacts On Retailers

Jeff Fromm, Forbes

June 17, 2020

"Retailers plays a pivotal role in the U.S. economy—and while they’ve have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, the sector has adapted through innovation." Read the full article now...

Store shutdowns drive a 519% jump in online sales for GameStop

Digital Commerce 360

June 11, 2020

"Despite the higher ecommerce sales, Q1 total sales dropped 34%. The video game retailer also reported a net loss of nearly $166 million." Read the full article now...

New retail habits from coronavirus ‘ingrained’ in shoppers, Tractor Supply CEO says

Hannah Miller, CNBC

June 11, 2020

"Consumers will likely stick to shopping habits picked up during the coronavirus pandemic well into the future, according to Hal Lawton, CEO of Tractor Supply Company." Read the full article now...

Time Is Now To Use Bankrupt Stores’ Gift Cards


June 9, 2020

"Consumers whose wallets are bulging with gift cards issued by now-bankrupt retailers should think about spending them now—since they may become worthless." Read the full article now...

The Retail Pivot: How Retailers Have Adapted Through Digital Transformation

Agnes Teh Stubbs, Adweek

June 5, 2020

"As soon as storefronts shuttered in the wake of COVID-19, retailers had to adapt their business models. The pandemic is reshaping the landscape of American retail and accelerating digital transformation rapidly." Read the full article now...

Here are the retail winners in a post-Covid world, according to Evercore ISI

Maggie FItzgerald, CNBC

June 4, 2020

"The retailers that will survive the coronavirus crisis are those that can adapt to changing consumer behaviors that emerged from the pandemic, according to Evercore ISI." Read the full article now...

Americans Have Been Slow to Embrace Contactless Payments. Coronavirus Will Change That

Diana Pearl, Adweek

May 29, 2020

"In May 2019, New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority made the milestone announcement that it was rolling out a contactless payment system, starting with the 4, 5 and 6 subway lines from Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn." Read the full article now...

No Bathrooms, No Sephora Makeup Counter: How Retail Is Changing Post-Coronavirus

Sissi Cao, Observer

May 29, 2020

"As of this week, every state has reopened from the coronavirus lockdown to some degree, allowing parks, construction sites and certain non-essential businesses to resume operation." Read the full article now...

Which major retail companies have filed for bankruptcy since the coronavirus pandemic hit? Here's the list.

Emily Pandise, NBC News

May 15, 2020

"From iconic department stores to entertainment giants, the coronavirus has seemingly spared no one in its devastation of the U.S. economy." Read the full article now...

Preparing for the 2020 Coronavirus Holiday Season as an eCommerce Seller

Dave Furness, eSeller Cafe

May 11, 2020

"As of Monday May 11th, some reports have found that there has been an 87% increase in eCommerce revenues when compared to normal averages." Read the full article now...

Demand for Digital Gifting Reaches All-Time High

MarTech Series

May 7, 2020

"As consumers are pushed to shop online, findings from a new study by NAPCO Research, a leading independent retail research firm, examine the progress and areas for growth in digital gifting programs." Read the full article now...

Consumer Behavior: Now and Post Coronavirus Pandemic

Renata Akers, Total Retail

April 21, 2020

"Amid this time frame of widespread panic and uncertainty, three momentous, albeit predictable, changes in consumer behavior occurred." Read the full article now...

How the coronavirus pandemic could lift gift card sales

Jaime Toplin, Business Insider
April 20, 2020

"To help these businesses stay afloat, payments providers and fintechs are enabling merchants to easily sell gift cards for use after the pandemic." Read the full article now...

COVID-19 Drives Walmart Grocery Mobile App Download Surge

Raymond Pucci, Payments Journal
April 14, 2020

"The Walmart Grocery app has seen all-time highs in downloads and now ranks No. 1 among shopping apps in the U.S. as of April 7, 2020, according to a new analysis from tech firm App Annie." Read the full article now...

Consumers Look to Gift Cards Amidst the Crisis

Blackhawk Network
April 9, 2020

"Blackhawk Network research shows consumers are using gift cards for charitable activities and sales data shows spike in egifts, ecommerce sales of gift cards." Read the full article now...

Blackhawk Network Acquires SVM Cards

Blackhawk Network
April 8, 2020

"Acquisition enhances B2B customer offerings with entry into fuel card issuance and expands robust incentives customer portfolio." Read the full press release now...