The 2022 Gifting Index: Take the Gifting Challenge

It’s time for the 2022 Gifting Index from the e-tailing group. Looking back, 2021 was an unprecedented holiday season. Retailers pushed shoppers to buy early, given supply chain challenges and logistical concerns. Physical stores were open, potentially shifting the dynamics though shopping online remained strong and omnichannel’s role as a pickup destination was solidified.

The 2022 Gifting Index

Consumers spent a total of $204.5 billion over the 2021 holiday season, up 8.6% year-over-year. For additional perspective, during the key November timeframe, (Nov. 1 to Nov. 29), consumers had already spent $109.8B online, growing significantly at 11.9% over last year.

For the second year in a row, the e-tailing group took a methodical look at how gifting was being managed by online retailers during the holiday season. The result is the e-tailing group 2022 Gifting Index, sponsored by GiftNow.

The 2022 Gifting Index

To create the 2022 Gifting Index, the e-tailing group collected data from November 1 to December 4 of 2021, during the prime holiday season of the year and researched 20 features across 50 retailers in 7 categories and 4 fundamentals that support smart gifting.

Take the Gifting Challenge

Results for the 2022 Gifting Index revealed that retailers fell into four groups. Most significantly, we find that retailers have invested in their gifting strategies with 38% achieving a 70+ score (Gift Rich or Excellent) as compared to only 14% in 2020.

10 fast facts from 2021

While the findings are robust, here are just 10 fast facts from the survey that should pique your interest and push you to find out where your gifting initiatives stand.

  1. 98% of the retailers surveyed had electronic/digital gift cards and 20% now have the option to add video to personalize the gifting experience vs.16% in 2020
  2. 98% had an onsite gift center with 92% allowing shoppers to find gifts by attribute, such as price or recipient
  3. Gifting visibility was more important than ever as 80% of retailers vs. 68% had a top navigation link to gifting
  4. 76% of retailers had a loyalty program
  5. Corporate gifting can be found on 44% of retailer sites with 40% having a bulk buying option
  6. 88% vs. 76% had live chat available for customer service
  7. Only 22% had unconditional free shipping on all products
  8. 30% had the capability to make a same-day delivery
  9. 58% of retailers provided greater customer service by extending holiday returns dates vs 36% in 2020 with 59% of those retailers extending it to 1/31/22 or later
  10. 32% of retailers shared their cutoff dates for ground and expedited shipping, with 12/7 being the earliest and 12/23 the latest day for ground delivery, each at only one retailer

Asking the Right Questions

Retailers should consider the following questions as an ideal starting point whether you’re “Gift Rich,” “Gift Challenged” or in between.

Invested in Gifting

  • Have you taken a methodical approach to exploring your e-commerce gifting features?
  • Have you added the right set of gifting features to your site?
  • Have you tested your own shopping experience to see how it stacks up against your competitors and the best in the industry?
  • How sophisticated is the creative execution of your gifting experience?
  • Have you dedicated locations and links to making gifting visible for your visitors?

Contemplating Gifting

  • Are you missing an important opportunity to test gifting on your site?
  • What features might make sense as a starting point?
  • If gifting isn’t appropriate, is there any loyalty functionality that should be in consideration?
  • How have your competitors addressed gifting for their business? 
  • What can you learn and apply to other areas of your site experience from a broader look at gifting functionality? 

Calculating the Opportunity

  • Review the 20 metrics that comprise the gifting index.
  • Score your current performance to see how your company stacks up industry-wide.
  • Assess key competitors.
  • Set a 2022 gifting goal.
  • Identify features that you will add or enhance to upgrade your gifting including their creative execution.
  • Develop a timeline to implement your plan to be ready for key holidays.

Get the 2022 Gifting Index

This blog will get you started. But you can get more details by downloading the e-tailing group’s 2021 Gifting Index to see examples from the likes of Coach, Kate Spade, Best Buy and more. Find out who’s “Gift Rich” and who’s “Gift Challenged” and how you compare.

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