Sheffield-based hospitality gift card platform Toggle has reported a ‘buoyant’ Christmas performance in spite of December sales being down overall. With the pandemic forcing businesses to close their doors to customers, operators pivoted to selling retail products and at-home experiences, as well as gift cards.
Digital sales increased by 39% however total sales of £1.3m were comparable with December 2019. In-venue sales accounted for just 8% of overall sales compared to 28% during the previous year. Despite increased Toggle customer numbers, expected sales were down around 50% due to locked-down locations and consumer confidence.
December trading data also reveals:
- The average transaction value for each gift card sale was £38.39
- December sales peaked on Christmas Eve with £82,000 of sales - plus over £25,000 of sales on Christmas Day itself
- Women aged 21-30 were the demographic most likely to purchase gift cards
- Christmas accounted for 29% of 2020 sales.
Dan Brookman, CEO said: “We quadrupled the number of operators on Toggle over the last 12 months. There were some noticeable winners as far as revenue, and what we recognise is that consumers are still trusting the brands that they love. Retail and experiences will continue to drive up revenue growth. We now have licensed distribution for operators who are looking to package and sell alcohol.”
He continued: “Gifting in hospitality is still very early in its evolution. For operators to maximise the opportunity, it must become a revenue channel that’s part of the overall strategy. Gift cards provide an invaluable route to new customers and therefore brand engagement.”
2020 marked a considerable shift for the hospitality sector in diversifying income streams and embracing technology. Toggle has been well-positioned to support this, with the platform providing a way for operators to raise pre-sold revenue through gift card sales and sell retail products and at-home experiences directly to customers throughout the pandemic.
Valentines is just over a month away which gives operators another opportunity to engage with customers.