12:00 AM, 06 21, 2016

Can you please everyone with just one gift card?

Tesco Advertorial

As B2B gift card suppliers, we often get asked what the ‘perfect’ gift card is for someone you don’t know very well – a 3rd party, affiliate, or even a colleague within a different department. Recently, our answer has been ‘a supermarket or department store gift card’. Simply, the vast selection of choice, and online accessibility makes Tesco Gift Cards and eCodes ideal for most recipients. We speak to Karl Vogeler, Tesco B2B Manager about why Tesco Gift Cards are the ideal choice for any business seeking to improve their sales, marketing or employee relationships.

Tesco Gift Cards have been in the news lately….!

Yes it was a real surprise to see the Queen holding one of our gift cards recently. I only hope she enjoyed spending the card as much as she did winning it! The question on everybody’s mind is what did she spend the gift card on?

Gift cards that are picked up by consumers (B2C) are a proven concept. What makes Tesco Gift Cards ideal for B2B as well?

The sheer size and scale of Tesco is what makes us so appealing to customers. The Tesco Gift Card allows customers the flexibility of where to spend and what to spend it on. With access to 1000’s of products and leading brands instore and online at Tesco Direct there really is something for everybody.

All our B2B gift cards come with free delivery, a 5 year expiry, Clubcard points on redemption (on production of a valid Clubcard and on certain products only) and with plastic and digital versions available, they are ideally placed to meet all your B2B needs.

Grocery shopping is something everyone needs to do. How can employers utilise Tesco Gift Cards in a way that is sensitive to people’s circumstances?

By offering somebody a grocery gift card, you are giving them choice and control of how to spend that card. Everyone is looking to make their money go that little bit further nowadays, and at Tesco we provide customers with a range of products to suit peoples lifestyles and pockets. From our recent launch of 7 new brands exclusive to Tesco in our fruit and veg and meat and poultry departments, to our Brand Guarantee where you will never pay more for brands bought at Tesco, to Clubcard points on Tesco Gift Card redemptions we are showing customers we are reacting to their needs and giving them the peace of mind that they can get everything they need from a Tesco Gift Card.

Tesco are renowned for superstores. What are the items or services people may not realise are offered by Tesco Group?

Our stores are still the primary way in which we serve our customers everyday – with over 3,500 stores and 310,000 dedicated colleagues in the UK. However, it may surprise some people that there is more to a Tesco store than just selling groceries. At Tesco Direct we give customers access to 1000’s of brands from the latest iPod to the most recent blockbuster movie and all from the click of a button. Tesco Bank allows customers to transfer money in a Tesco store to over 200 countries using the International Money Transfer service (in partnership with MoneyGram®) or get currency from one of the 276 Travel Money Bureaux (Tesco Travel Money is provided by Travelex). Tesco Bank also offers customers a range of products from Current Accounts and Credit Cards, to Mortgages and Home Insurance, all supported through a dedicated UK team. Tesco has come a long way from its beginnings as a small market stall in the East End of London 90 years ago.

When we talk about engaging employees, it often leads naturally into all areas of the business, including health. Is tapping into employee health a good idea for employers and how can Tesco Gift Cards help?

I think everyone is becoming more aware of their health and its importance in everyday life and what you eat has a big factor to play in that. At Tesco, we understand people want to make more healthy choices and are helping them to do this. Through clearly labelling the nutritional content on our packaging to make it easy for customers to see and make informed decisions, to creating healthy lifestyle products within our ranges, to the Tesco Eat Happy Project where we are committed to tackling children’s diet related problems. Tesco is helping customer’s every day in making healthy choices when it comes to their shopping and the Tesco Gift Card supports this.

On top of that – we all want to predict the future of what the bestsellers are going to be, especially for Christmas. What do you think is the future trend or next big seller, either B2B or B2C?

For gift cards I think digital will continue to become more popular as people get used to it and retailers continue to improve the customer journey of instore redemption. People are using their mobile phones for more and more transactions nowadays and it seems logical that gift cards should be adapting to that technology, otherwise they could be left behind. Product wise who knows – if I had a crystal ball and could predict the next big seller I’d be a wealthy man!

We often talk about the power of gift cards to enhance employee benefits, or as a reward. What is life like at Tesco for employees and how do you help encourage staff loyalty and retention?

Tesco life is never dull! Over the last 18 months we have seen a big shift in our focus as it puts customers back in the heart of everything we do. It’s an exciting time for us and staff have been empowered to make a difference every day. Like any other FTSE 100 company, Tesco has a comprehensive rewards programme for its staff. Benefits range from a staff discount card, to share save schemes, improvements to holiday entitlements and the upcoming launch of a new benefits platform which will give staff access to a number of money saving ideas including our cycle to work scheme and gift cards!

Where do you see Tesco Gift Cards changing in the future? Obviously mobile is changing how the world and payments work – what is your take?

We have already been working hard on developing the Tesco Gift Card to suit the needs of customers and businesses today. We provide a standard gift card, a reloadable gift card for the employee benefits market and most recently a digital gift card. All our cards come with a 5 year expiry date from purchase or last use and can be loaded with £1 to £1,000 depending on the product chosen. What we need to focus on now is improving the customer journey. This includes allowing Tesco Gift Cards to be redeemed on our .com website (they cannot currently), accepting mobile phone scans in stores (removing the need to print off your eCode) and in a joint venture with SVM Global, we will be launching a Tesco Gift Card portal to allow businesses and agencies to manage gift card transactions remotely more easily and giving them real time load capabilities. It is about making gift cards accessible to everybody, wherever they are, whenever they need them, however they want them.

Our surveys and research show people often buy gift cards for themselves as well as for employee rewards or as sales incentives. What do you think are the most popular items for people to pick up for themselves?

I think people shop differently when they have a gift card then when they don’t. They seem more likely to purchase something that reminds them of the reason why they received or purchased the card – to make a connection with the purchaser or rewarder. Given that, we do see a higher proportion of our cards spent in clothing and home and entertainment. Trading up to our finest range or treating themselves to a bottle of nice wine also seems to be popular. I guess ultimately it comes down to the individual and their preference – which is why gift cards are so popular – they are versatile and allow the redeemer to make the choice they want!

Finally - if you had a £1000 gift card for Tesco, just for yourself– what would you buy?

I’m in the process of moving home so it would probably be spent on new things for that – oh and a big bunch of flowers for my wife!

If you’re interested in purchasing a Tesco Gift Card, email hello@svmglobal.com or speak to us by calling 01709917278. We are able to offer a wide range of Tesco Gift Card options, from one off, bulk gift card orders, right through to a platform solution that allows your employees or affiliates to be instantly rewarded with a Tesco Gift Card.  Please note this is a paid for advertorial from Tesco.



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