How To Use Shopify Gift Cards: A Step-by-Step Tutorial

Customer experience has been highly altered in a time of ‘essential spending’ like this. Clothing stores that were bustling until just days ago, pleasing shopaholics with unconventional concepts, now sit unsure of when customers will next pass through their doors.

>>> Read more: 100 Shopify Stores Examples to Inspire You Launch New Business

Applicable to both online and offline businesses, Shopify gift cards can help boost the overall performance in the long run. For brick and mortar stores, Shopify gift cards help tackle temporary shutdown and warm customers up to reopening. For online enterprises, this practice comes off as a reward and incentive for the next shopping experience of their customers.

How can this method be simple and powerful at the same time? Let’s dig deeper!


I. What is a Shopify gift card?

A gift card is a prepaid stored-value money card, usually issued by a retailer or bank, to be used as an alternative to cash for purchases within a particular store or related business.

Gift card examples According to Statista, the global gift cards market was valued at approximately 320 billion U.S. dollars in 2017 and was forecast to reach a value of 510 billion U.S. dollars by 2025. First data statistics showed that among millennials, 55% agree they're more likely to visit a store they would have normally skipped, and nearly two-thirds are likely to visit a store more often.

Remember how happy you are going to a computer store with a discount voucher? That’s loyal customer treatment, bundle sales and all the things macro knowledge. In essence, that’s how a gift card works.

gift card examples

As a digital kind of gift card itself, a Shopify gift card is made online and distributed by Shopify store owners to their customers via email as an incentive. A gift card is also a special type of product that customers can buy and use as payment toward future orders.

💡 Quick Read - How to Create a Shopify Automatic Discounts For Your Store?

II. Why Should Businesses Use Shopify Gift Cards?

Expenses such as wages, rent, utilities and critical supplies are becoming more and more unaffordable, leaving businesses vulnerable with cash going out and less cash coming. Online stores bear no less burden since customers nowadays tend to make more budget-conscious buying decisions than ever before.

Creating Shopify gift cards is free. This practice allows supportive customers to make a purchase and redeem at a later date, which can help free up cash flow for your business. You can also issue a gift card to a customer for free as a reward or incentive. 

Shopify gift cards are sold like a product, but gift card sales are reported differently. You can use the gift card sales report to help track your gift card sales and to account for gift card purchases.

You can explore more about differences between gift card and store credit here.

III. How To Add a Shopify Gift card

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From your Shopify admin, go to Products > Gift Cards.

Click Sell gift cards if you are a new user with no gift cards available. 

start selling gift cards

If you already have some gift cards in-store, select ‘Create gift card product’

create new gift cards

Provide necessary information for your Shopify gift card. To help your customers find your Shopify gift cards, add them to a collection.

gift card detailed information

Click ‘View’ to see the gift card you just created in the storefront. 

View gift cards in storefront

Now that you have activated the gift card feature, you can easily change the settings by accessing Gift cards > Gift card products. 

Gift card settings

Hit ‘Make products available’ to display your product on the sales channel. 

Set gift cards to visible

IV. Issue Gift Cards and Track With Your Shopify Gift Card Codes

When you issue a gift card, you generate a Shopify gift card code and email it to a customer without receiving any payment in return. You decide how much the gift card is worth, and the customer who receives it can use its value toward other products in your store.

From your Shopify admin, go to Products > Gift Cards.

Select Issue gift card.

select issue gift card

In the Issue gift card dialog, you can adjust these following sections:

  • Initial value: The value amount of the card that you can redeem later
  • Customer: The customer you send the Shopify gift card to. Either name or email is required.
  • Expiration date: If you want to set an expiry date for the gift card, then click Never, and uncheck Never expires to select a date
  • Notes: Optional. The note is visible when viewing the gift card in your Shopify admin, but is not visible to the customer.

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generate gift card code

Click ‘Save’ to generate the Shopify gift card code. This is the only time you will be able to view the entire Shopify gift card code.

Your customers will receive an email as follows. This email contains a unique Shopify gift card code that they can use at checkout to redeem its value.

gift card email

After sending out the Shopify gift cards, you can view the issued gift card information in your Shopify admin dashboard.

From your Shopify admin, go to Products > Gift Cards.

Click the code for the issued gift card. You'll be able to see only the last four characters of the code.

On the issued gift card's page, you can view its details and Edit.

edit gift card code

Enter the correct customer information and select whether to send the gift card.

Click Save.

Running a diverse ecosystem, Shopify makes the gift card experience even more entertaining with their exclusive Shopify gift card apps.

‘Shopkeeper Easy Gift Cards’ is a feast for the eyes and heart of Shopify store owners. Gift card recipients can receive an animated, mobile and print-friendly gift card that also displays the personal note and gift giver's name so they know who the gift is from. On a more tactical side of the story, ‘Rise: Gift Cards & Loyalty’ provides a manageable solution to build an enhanced store credit program using automated rules.

Check out more Shopify gift card apps in the Shopify app store here.

IV. What’s next when Shopify gift cards are ready in place?

Once your Shopify gift cards are set up, it's crucial to effectively promote them, especially during festive seasons like the New Year. Drawing inspiration from the '10 Amazing Ideas for New Year Marketing Campaigns' article, consider leveraging special discounts, engaging social media giveaways, or even sending personalized New Year emails. These strategies can significantly enhance the visibility and appeal of your gift cards, tapping into the festive mood and encouraging more customers to purchase and gift them during this celebratory season.

Communication is key. Do let everybody know about your Shopify gift card program, especially your loyal customers so can they support you.

You can email your customer list to notify them of changes to your operations and services.

notify your customers of the gift cards

Spreading the word on your social media channels and websites is also of great importance. If you’re running a digital store, you can highlight the gift card initiative as a banner announcement using PageFly features.

promote your gift cards

Limited physical interaction has asked that businesses of all sectors rethink their customer experience efforts. Shopify gift cards should be considered a beneficial short-term solution, which, if utilized wisely, might turn into a monumental sales tactic when the pandemic situation is less intense.

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