Nearly Half of Employers Plan to Increase Corporate Gifting Frequency Post Pandemic, According to Coresight Research and GiftNow

Corporate gifting is on the rise as nearly fifty percent of businesses say they intend to increase the frequency of their gift giving post COVID-19, according to a new corporate gifting survey from Coresight Research commissioned by GiftNow, a Synchrony solution.

The U.S. corporate gift-giving market has experienced significant growth despite the challenges presented by the pandemic and is projected to reach $242 billion this year and experience a $64 billion increase during the next three years to reach $306 billion by 2024. Employers have significantly increased their gifting frequency throughout the pandemic—35% of respondents cited gifting more than usual since working remotely. Of those who have increased their gifting frequency, some 66% did so to keep their teams motivated and engaged while nearly 60% increased gifting to maintain connections with their clients, according to Coresight Research’s survey.

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The Coresight Research study, Unwrapping the American Corporate Gifting Opportunity, found that while the market is poised for continued growth, corporate gift givers are facing challenges with the gift purchasing experience due to a lack of innovation. Gift buyers are seeking higher quality and greater variety of gifts, timely delivery, and a simplified end-to-end gifting process. Other notable findings from the Coresight Research study include:

  • Gift Cards Remain Most Popular – Physical (51%) and digital (48%) gift cards were the two most purchased corporate gifting items over the past 12 months. They have potential to remain the most purchased items if a greater variety of higher quality gifts remain inaccessible to corporate gift buyers. Additionally, gift cards are expected to benefit from consumers switching to shopping online—almost seven in 10 U.S. shoppers have switched to online shopping.
  • Newer Gifting Opportunities are Influencing Frequency– As the events industry pivoted to digital formats, corporate event organizers sought gifting options to increase engagement and show appreciation, with nearly half (48%) of respondents utilizing gifting for events. While events are gradually moving back to in-person formats, hybrid options will remain the norm, creating opportunities for creative corporate gifting options.
  • Most Gifters Spending Between $75$100 Per Gift – One quarter (25%) of corporate gift buyers are spending in this range for individual gifts and nearly 20% for group gifts. The willingness to spend these amounts indicates there is a desire for higher quality gifts. In addition, restrictive company policies on gifting emerged as the second biggest challenge—almost seven in 10 respondents cited it as either “very challenging” or “challenging.”

“Our research found that 48% of respondents benefited substantially in relationship building due to corporate gifting and 45% are benefiting substantially from making the recipient feel valued. It’s evident that corporate gifting’s ROI is motivating more companies to increase their gifting frequency,” said Deborah Weinswig, CEO and Founder of Coresight Research. “The market’s continued growth is very promising but will be contingent on introducing more creative gifting options, and retailers can play a big role here.”

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The corporate gifting market historically has been viewed as a finite segment limited to corporate swag or gift cards, but corporations are increasingly seeing value in gifts from retailer and merchant brands that are viewed in high regard by their employees, partners, and event attendees. Retailers can play a more active role in this market as their merchandise is more giftable today than ever before.

“Businesses understand the power of corporate gifting and plan to increase their investment; however, they want to be assured that gaining access to higher quality and larger varieties of gifts is seamless,” said Jennifer Muller, CMO of GiftNow at Synchrony. “This presents retailers and merchants a tremendous opportunity to expand their e-commerce operations to create an easy-to-navigate gifting journey for corporate gift buyers and enable access to more gift card types and giftable products that can significantly increase their sales. It’s a $64 billion revenue opportunity during the next three years leading to 2024 they cannot afford to miss.”

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