giftcardThere’s a report on today about the $75 million dollars in gift cards that will soon becomes worthless.

As more retailers file for bankruptcy or go out of business, more than $75 million in gift cards are at risk of becoming worthless pieces of plastic this year.

What a nightmare, not only for the businesses but for the consumers. I have purchased quite a few gift cards in the past, but I’ll definitely think twice before I do so again. The idea that my money could so easily disappear leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

CNN hit the nail on the head with this point:

For many shoppers, it’s a harsh lesson about the risks of gift cards. Consumers spent an estimated $26.3 billion in gift cards at retailers alone last holiday season, compared with $24.8 billion in 2006 and $18.48 billion in 2005, according to the National Retail Federation.

C. Britt Beemer, chairman of America’s Research Group, says “you will see a lot of frustration among customers. You basically stole (money) out of the customers’ pocket. They will never forgive you.”

Trust and faith in a retailer is key. It’s what keeps them customers. Evangelists for your company and product will only stay that way until you betray them. And it usually only takes one time.

Here’s hoping something good comes out of this situation.

‘Chelle Parmele
Social Media Marketing Manager
Palo Alto Software

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