Gift Voucher Solutions and SecureTrading have launched a bespoke service that enables restaurants and hospitality businesses to sell gift vouchers online.
The UK Gift Card and Voucher Association (UKGCVA) quotes the worth of the UK’s gift card and gift voucher market as being £4.6 billion, a figure that’s anticipated to grow 14 per cent by the end of 2012. Vouchers purchased by the corporate sector grew 231 per cent during 2011; a figure that suggests the increasing popularity of online purchasing.
Using SecureTrading’s ‘payment gateway’ and Gift Voucher Solutions’ software system, a level 1 PCI DSS compliant web shop – with integrated payments system, personalised eVoucher mail tool and automated luxury printing service – has been created.
Managing director of Gift Voucher Solutions Dawn Anderson said: “Some hospitality businesses still use third parties to generate online sales, gifting their cash flow and spending tens of thousands of pounds a year on commission. Gift Voucher Solutions charge a fixed annual fee for its Software as a Service (SaaS) and combined with SecureTrading’s rates, provides hotels and restaurants with an extremely effective and affordable way of embracing technology.
“As with everything else, the gift voucher industry is moving towards the digital era. EVouchers, once deemed the latest innovation, are now giving way to virtual gifts and such changes should be embraced to keep up with the customers’ needs.”
Tim Allitt, head of sales and marketing at SecureTrading, added: “Many UK hotels and restaurants sell gift vouchers by phone, in some cases breaching the terms of their merchant agreement and PCI compliance. Merchants require additional authorisation from their acquiring bank to process ‘cardholder not present’ transactions for gift vouchers because of the high risk of fraud and chargebacks. By working with Gift Voucher Solutions, we can remove that headache for merchants.”
Image: The Bull & Swan Inn at Burghley, one of the Hillbrooke Hotels chain that uses the service.