Boston, MA (PRWEB) November 17, 2012
Mercator Advisory Group has released its official, annual holiday forecast predicting the billions of dollars that consumers will load onto gift cards sold in US stores and how the delivery of virtual gift cards will further increase consumer adoption.
Numerous market surveys of gift givers show that gift cards remain at the top of the lists of both gift givers and recipients. Mercator Advisory Group's There's No Gift Like Plastic for the Holidays examines the enduring popularity of gift cards as well as projections for holiday loads. The research projects the funds that will be loaded on to closed-loop cards, mall-based closed-loop cards and examines the rise in virtual card activity.
"Gone are sweaters with silly reindeer on them, pink bunny pajamas, and fruitcakes. Now, the giver can be seen as thoughtful without making a mistake, and the recipient can make a choice using a gift card she didn't need to stand in a return line to get," Ben Jackson, Sr. Analyst of Mercator Advisory Group's Prepaid Advisory Service and author of the free report states.
From a retailer's perspective Jackson says "Gift cards can be a more cost effective method for luring customers into a store than offering discounts or other types of promotional offers. It makes sense for a retailer to promote the purchase of gift cards because a gift card means that a cardholder already has money committed to shopping at that store."
Mercator Advisory Group's CustomerMonitor Survey Series found in 2011 that 57% of prepaid card buyers said gift cards were a convenient type of gift to give and 53% said they bought gift cards to let a gift recipient pick out their own gift. In addition, 21% of gift givers said they bought a gift card because the recipient specifically requested a gift card, and 14% said recipients requested gift cards for a specific store. The CustomerMonitor Survey Series is based on data obtained during a national sample of 1,000 online consumer survey responses.
The special holiday forecast There's No Gift Like Plastic for the Holidays is offered for free and can be downloaded from Mercator Advisory Group's payments and banking industry news and information portal PaymentsJournal.com.
Click the link to download the free There's No Gift Like Plastic for the Holidays report: http://www.paymentsjournal.com/Download.aspx?id=14146
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About Mercator Advisory Group
Mercator Advisory Group is the leading, independent research and advisory services firm exclusively focused on the payments and banking industries. We deliver pragmatic and timely research and advice designed to help our clients uncover the most lucrative opportunities to maximize revenue growth and contain costs. Our clients range from the world's largest payment issuers, acquirers, processors, merchants and associations to leading technology providers and investors. Mercator Advisory Group is also the publisher of the online payments and banking news and information portal PaymentsJournal.com.