Moms, Dads, and Grads: A Quick Look at 2014 Gift Card Offerings

Navigator Edition: June 2014
By: Allison Brenner

Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and graduations create a trifecta of gift-giving opportunities every year. The National Retail Federation publishes projected spending surveys for each holiday; this year, the three occasions were expected to yield a combined $37 billion in spending on gifts.  Gift cards are estimated to represent over $5 billion or approximately 14% of total gift spend.  As such, retailers invest in a range of promotions and marketing tactics to highlight gift cards in May and June.  Based on our field work, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day had several noteworthy promotions.  Listed below are select gift card promotions of note that were visible during the May/June timeframe:

J. Jill: J. Jill offered a Mother’s Day promotion with a charitable tie-in; a donation was made to the J. Jill Compassion Fund or a charity of choice when a gift card was purchased before Mother’s Day

Kroger: In May, Kroger offered $5-$15 off select gift cards which could be gifted to Moms or Grads

Applebee’s: Gift givers received a $10 digital bonus gift card with the purchase of $50 in Applebee’s gift cards around Mother’s Day
GiftFly: GiftFly launched a new website just before Mother’s Day allowing users to send customized eGifts for over 1 million local businesses on Yelp; gift cards can be sent via Facebook, email or text and arrive immediately

Amazon: Amazon Moms (members of a subscription service) received a $5 promotional code when buying at least $45 in thank-you gift card packs. For Mother’s Day, gift wrap on gift cards was offered for $1. For Father’s Day, buyers received a $10 Android app store credit with the purchase of select gift cards (Starbucks, Whole Foods, Dominoes, Subway, Panera, AMC, and more)

Starbucks/Groupon: A $10 eGift card for $5 was offered the day before Father’s Day via Groupon

Target: Target features a Grad Gift Finder on its main website; it filters products such as iTunes gift cards, bedding, etc. For Father’s Day, Target advertised free gift cards with select electronics purchases and 25% off Beats music gift cards

Rite Aid:  $5 in loyalty program rewards was offered with the purchases of $25 of Sears or Bass Pro Shops gift cards around Father’s Day; $10 in rewards was offered with $50 worth of select restaurant gift cards and $5 for American Express gift cards

Source: Company websites, NRF, hip2save,

For more information, please contact Allison Brenner, specializing in Credit Card Issuing,

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