Everyone likes getting a good deal; it's one of the reasons people like consumer friendly gift cards. Another way of getting a great deal is by paying less than full price for a gift card. This week ScripSmart added two new feeds for discount gift cards.
How Discount Gift Cards Work
There are several players in the secondary gift card marketplace. In short, sometimes people receive a gift card and they simply don't want to use it.
For example, I recently chatted with a woman who owned a $100 Olive Garden Gift Card, but did not have an Olive Garden nearby. Because the gift card can not be used online, it was better for her to sell the gift card for cash, even if it was for less than the value of the gift card.
Let's say she received 77% of the face value in cash for her $100 gift card ($77 for a $100 gift card). After she gives the gift card to the third party, it's listed for sale at less than face value but more than the amount they paid. In this example, if the Olive Garden Gift Card was sold to a new consumer at 11% off or 89% of the face value, the secondary gift card marketplace takes the difference (89%-77% or 12%) as profit.
Because there are several companies competing to buy and sell gift cards, there can be quite a difference when buying discounted Olive Garden Gift Cards. At the time of writing this the discounts range from 8-11% off. If you frequent the Olive Garden, that can result in a significant savings.
More Feeds To Come
We're currently pulling in data from 4 different service providers: Giftcard Zen, Gift Card Place, Cardpool and Giftcards.com.
In the coming weeks we'll be adding even more feeds. At the end of the day, the secondary gift card market offers meaningful value to consumers. It's also common for people to buy discounted gift cards for themselves. In fact, often the balances are an unusual amount because a gift card might be sold after it's already been used.