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Gap to offer mobile gift cards via Swagg app

SAN FRANCISCO – Swagg announced it is adding Gap to its list of retailers offering mobile gift cards within the company’s application at the Mobile Shopping Summit.

The executive did not reveal the exact date of the partnership launch, but said that it will happen soon. Mobile gift cards are changing the retail space, per the presenter.

“There’s a rather large retailer who’s headquartered in San Francisco that we’re working with,” said Chip Fishburne, vice president of financial and merchant services at Firethorn Holdings, Atlanta.

“It’s the Gap and they will be coming on-board soon and launching as a partner,” he said.

The Swagg application is Firethorn’s direct-to-consumer offering.

Consumers can purchase, personalize and exchange gift cards directly via their mobile device.

In addition, consumers can access account information, special offers and loyalty programs.

Current retailers using the app include Crocs, Steve Madden, American Apparel, American Eagle Outfitters, CBS Sports, Wet Seal, Arden B., Buckhead Life Restaurant Group, 1800Flowers and Live Nation Merchandise.

“Right before the holidays we launched a smartphone app that lets consumers give and send virtual cards instantaneously,” Mr. Fishburne said. “We really wanted to make that gifting experience a lot more personable.

“Everybody loves getting a good deal, but sometimes that process is difficult and time consuming,” he said. “We give consumers the ability to have more control in that process.

“They choose what kinds of offers they want to get because really making offers relevant is what we’re all about.”

Mobile gift cards are the future, according to Mr. Fishburne

Consumers are tired of carrying around all of their cards in one wallet.

An app such as Swagg provides one location where consumers can access all of their cards.

“You can take that bit of plastic and you can put it in one secure place in that one location,” Mr. Fishburne said. “That’s just one reason that some of our retail partners picked us.

“It is becoming a lot more difficult to recognize the revenue of unused balances on gift cards,” he said. “Any way we can help consumers know what their balance is, then that is great.”

Mr. Fishburne said that before retailers signed on for the service, they wanted to make sure that the app was going to mean incremental revenue for them.

Additionally, the executive said that the company is seeing a trend with the mobile gifting process.

“You use it, send it and it is secured,” Mr. Fishburne said. “It’s a good way not only to thank somebody, but it’s a fast, easy and personable way to acknowledge the individual.”

Final Take
Rimma Kats is staff reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York