The National Garden Gift Card, which can be used at any participating Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) member garden centres and nurseries retailer in the United Kingdom, won the best Garden Gifts category at the Garden Industry Manufacturer’s Association (GIMA) Awards, which took place at Celtic Manor in Wales on 13 July 2017.
“The HTA is the UK’s oldest gift voucher program and therefore moving to plastic was a big decision for them. It’s also a complicated program because it is a not-for-profit membership organisation made up of 2,000 unaffiliated members with many different till systems, making the sale and redemption of the gift card a complicated scenario that needs to be a seamless and consistent experience for the purchaser and redeemer,” says Stuart Green, CEO of EML Payments Europe.
EML Payments Europe is the card program manager and processer for the National Garden Gift Card, which can be purchased at Incomm and Blackhawk’s retail distribution networks throughout the U.K., as well as approximately 100 HTA member garden centres. The card is currently accepted by around 800 HTA garden retailers. Since the program launched in October 2011, more than 280,000 gift cards have been sold and £5.7m redeemed.
“EML were chosen as the HTA’s partner because of our peerless experience in running gift card programs across multiple till systems. We provide programs to shopping centres, franchise based retailers, casinos and run card programs that are theme specific (restaurants, cinemas, kids cards) across multiple retail groups per program. It is this experience, our ability to find innovative solutions to difficult problems and our absolute belief in a partnership approach that won us the HTA’s business and allowed us to renew the contract for a new term,” Green says. “The HTA continues to be one of our most valued partners and we are very proud to provide this historic and much loved program.”
The gift card drives increased footfall to garden centres and increases basket value, as the recipient will often spend more instore than the face value of the gift card. Plus, they are easier to administer than paper vouchers, and offered in undenominated amounts to meet the needs of the customers. The addition of select supermarket and high street retailers offering the card for purchase has added a new revenue stream for HTA. And, EML was able to provide a more simplified solution, which gave the HTA full control and oversight of the program.
The many benefits for HTA include:
- Improved cash flow as retailers only pay when they sell or accept payment with a card
- Easier for members to get enough stock in advance of main gifting occasions when cash flow tends to be low
- Less administration as no requirement to send back paper/stubs
- Easier to merchandise instore with attractive designs and display stands
“We are delighted that the National Garden Gift Card has been recognised in this way with this award in this hotly contested category,” says Martin Simmons, HTA Director of Operations.
“Shoppers are looking for a gift with a difference and the gift card designs are really eye-catching. With retailer support the gift card will thrive, driving customers to garden centre stores and adding value to the garden industry for retailers, growers and manufacturers alike.”
Learn more about the HTA National Garden Gift Card
Explore Gift Card solutions from EML