Thursday, March 22, 2012

gift certificate

I had someone request a gift certificate from me recently.  I had never put one together before, but it was easy enough to do.  At some point I would like to develop a logo to put on items like this, but for now I'm using my little stamps.  I'm also using the turquoise/red theme on a lot of my new business items, such as my free shipping cards.

While I was putting everything together, I figured I might as well put together several so I have some on hand now.  I'm not planning to list it in my Etsy shop, but I added it to my info as an option that people can request.  It could be a request option at craft shows, too.

I always like to consult some other resources before I put together something like this.  Carol Dean and Sharla both have gift certificates in their shops so I checked out theirs before I finalized my own design.  This was definitely helpful.  Thanks ladies!  The one thing that is frustrating on Etsy is that you can only give out coupon codes for a % discount or free shipping.  There is no option for giving a dollar amount off of a purchase.  Maybe there will be someday.

Here are a few things to consider when making up a shop gift certificate:
  • Amount: If you are creating gift certificate listings online, they will have to be for specific amounts.  What amounts make sense for your customers and the price range of your shop?
  • Refund/Payment Transaction: How will you honor the gift certificate amount?  Is there a coupon code or will people have to complete it some other way?
  • Shipping: Can the certificate amount be applied to shipping cost or is it only good for items?
  • Single vs. Multiple Purchases: Does the entire gift certificate have to be used at one time or can the recipient split the amount over multiple purchases?  Again, this may be dependent on what makes sense your customers and shop price range.
  • Expiration Date: Does the gift certificate expire on a certain date or is it good forever?
Do you offer gift certificates for your business?  Why or why not?  Share your experiences and any other aspects of gift certificates that you've considered before offering them.


  1. I find the sentence "A refund will be issued for the amount of your gift certificate" very confusing. Perhaps I am having a bad morning -

  2. I think it is time I added a gift certificate to my shop too!
    Thanks for the reminder :)

  3. Cool- that's a great thing to have on hand. I'm also frustrated with the option etsy gives for discounts. I was trying to figure out how to do my BoGo discount today and settled on editing EACH listing again and offering a refund. So stupid.

  4. You bring up some very good points to consider when making gift certificates.
    Having a code for a $ amount would be very useful.

  5. Nice. I actually just ordered some gift certificates from Vistaprint. I was ordering some other things and it popped up as a suggestion so I decided to give it a try. We'll see!

  6. The points to consider for a gift certificate are very helpful. I guess another way to handle this is to have a discount coupon on Etsy that matches the certificate amount that you would handwrite at the time you give out the certificate. If the entire certificate is not used at once, then you could issue a second coupon code by email. This definitely merits some thinking before you do it!

  7. I think it's a great idea to have a gift certificate option. As a customer, "..does not expire" is a selling point! Will you keep track of certificate numbers in case someone loses it?

  8. Very good things to consider when thinking about gift certificates. I offered them a couple of years ago, but didn't have anyone purchase one, so I didn't relist them. It would be nice if Etsy had a way to take gift certificats as well as the discounts and free shipping.

  9. I thought the look of your gift certificate looked familiar! Edi helped me with mine and I have sold several but not all have been used. I need a better system of keeping track of them. I hope you sells lots!

  10. these are great questions. I was always confused about how the refund worked, but I just used Etsy's %, which was an easy way around it. {:-D

  11. gift certificates are a great idea. Helpful when you want to give someone a gift but don't know exactly what they would like.

  12. Great post! I never even thought to make a gift certificate for my shop, but it would probably be a great idea!! Thanks!

    I have a post for Friday Feature but I'm about to go to work. If you want to add it (and if you can?) you're more than welcome! Here's the link:

    Happy Friday!

  13. Your certificates look great. You mentioned a lot of things I hadn't considered like using them for shipping and using them on multiple purchases...thanks :)


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