Friday, November 30, 2007

Woo hoo! Instant Gift Certificates!

I'm impressed. I kept getting contacted by a company called SpaBoom to help me sell gift certificates online, and for a while, I ignored them because I already HAD an on-line gift certificate function on my web site. But then I recalled how difficult the process was both for my customers AND my staff, and I decided to look into it.

Well, I really like it. Clients can now order gift certificates and PRINT THEM OUT INSTANTLY. They can pick a design template based on the occasion (whether it's a birthday, holiday, Mother's Day, Father's Day, graduation, or other). They can have it emailed to the recipient IMMEDIATELY, or if they want to time the email to arrive on a specific day, they can specify that specific day! (Um, was that too repetitive?) Anyway, here's a link to this awesome new function.

I resisted at first because of the cost...SpaBoom takes 5% of the first $1,000 of gift certificate sales per month, then 4% of the next $1,000, then 3% of the next $1,000, and so on and so forth, until you sell over $4,000 and then everything else is 1%. With spa margins so low, 5% is a LOT...especially since we have Off-Peak hours now and these gift certificates might be used towards Off-Peak services.

But then I remembered the inordinate amount of processing that my spa coordinators had to do on this end to get a gift certificate done: manually process the card, manually create the gift certificate in Word, turn it into an Adobe PDF, crop it appropriately, then attach and email it out to the client. It wasn't INSTANT, it wasn't CONVENIENT, for the CLIENT or for US. So, I figured, okay. Let's see how it goes.

The other thing that I like much better about this new system is that we don't have to charge clients postage! YAY. They print it out, they mail it themselves. Win-win!

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