Walmart pilots gift card trade-in service
As a holiday present, the increasingly popular gift card is a double-edged sword — it gives recipients the freedom to buy whatever they want at a given retailer, but can also leave people stuck with credit at retailers where they would never shop. Generally these unwanted cards are filed away in a drawer, leaving the funds on the card in limbo.
But the more ubiquitous gift cards become, the more options displeased recipients have for getting rid of them. The secondhand gift card market is gaining steam all around, but one of the biggest companies in the game may have blown by the competition this holiday season. On Christmas Day this year, CardCash.com went live with a Walmart-branded microsite that allows users to exchange gift cards from over 200 other retailers for Walmart e-gift cards.
CardCash.com first opened its market for buying and selling secondhand gift cards in 2006. The company purchases unwanted or partially-used gift cards for a percentage of the card’s total value and then resells those gift cards on the site.
Walmart is currently considering its relationship with CardCash.com a test run, but the retailer may turn the program into a permanent fixture if it proves to be a success.
CardCash.com already has a prominent spot on another major retailer’s site. When users sell a gift card, they can opt to receive their payment either in the form of a check, a direct deposit or an Amazon gift card.
Meanwhile on the Walmart side of the relationship, walmart.cardcash.com is, according to a TechCrunch article, currently offering a 95 percent trade-in value for Amazon gift cards, one of the best trade-in deals offered. Cardcash.com calculates a gift card’s trade-in value on the basis of market conditions, and the values are subject to change based on market fluctuations.
Secondhand gift cards could very well be a boon to retailers, both because of the psychology of using them to shop and the dollars purported to be tied up in cards that never get used or fully zeroed out.
A Time.com article states that "shoppers are likely to overspend when given what seems like fake money … [and] researchers have found that consumers buy items they don’t need when they use a stored-value certificate …"
The article goes on to state that, according to a study by CEB TowerGroup, over $1 billion on gift cards went unused this year.
- Sell Gift Cards – CardCash.com
- Walmart Cardcash
- Turn your unused gift card into an electronic Walmart eGift card! – CardCash.com
- Wal-mart aims to make a buck from your gift card – Marketplace.org
- Walmart’s New Site Allows Customers To Exchange Unwanted Gift Cards For Walmart E-Cards – TechCrunch
- Walmart Will Trade You for Other Merchants’ Gift Cards – Time.com
Do you expect Walmart’s pilot program with CardCash.com to be a success and to be rolled out as a permanent program? In what ways might other retailers get into the secondhand gift card game?