Instant Gift Certificates from your website

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Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by moogie » Mon Dec 12, 2011 11:56 am

I was wanting to add gift certificate sales to my website. I have been looking at giftcardcafe.com. From what I can gather, they charge 4.95% and then you have to pay either paypal or authorize.net to process the credit card payments. Paypal seems to be the cheaper at 2.95%. That would mean the total charge is about 8%.

Does anyone have any experience with either giftcardcafe or a different service?

Since I am a sole practioner, I can't be available for people to drop by and buy gift certificates so I thought this might be a good alternative.

Angie

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by athletica » Mon Dec 12, 2011 2:09 pm

I just started using giftcardcafe.com. I like it. As far as I'm aware I paid a setup fee of approximately $30 and pay 4.95% on transactions.

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by Pete » Mon Dec 12, 2011 3:00 pm

I've been using Spaboom for a long time now. They charge 5% of the transaction (not sure what their setup fee is) and they've always been fantastic to work with. I JUST added Amazon Payments thru Amazon.com to handle the credit processing - haven't had anything run thru it yet, but setup was easy and free! They charge 2.95% also but have no monthly fees/minimums.

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by JLWmassage » Mon Dec 12, 2011 3:13 pm

Pete wrote:I've been using Spaboom for a long time now. They charge 5% of the transaction (not sure what their setup fee is) and they've always been fantastic to work with. I JUST added Amazon Payments thru Amazon.com to handle the credit processing - haven't had anything run thru it yet, but setup was easy and free! They charge 2.95% also but have no monthly fees/minimums.

Same with me also. I pay for the marketing suit for $29

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by cabwy » Mon Dec 12, 2011 4:10 pm

I looked at Spa Boom a month ago, and now I will admit that I "sped read" through it, but it looked like a hefty set up fee was required to establish a website.
Did either of you have this? Should I just call them and speak to them in person and see what the deal is? Moogie, I am agonizing over the same thing, trying to figure out how to sell gift certs where they can have them immediately to download..I am currently playing with the website through Vistaprint but while I can sell certificates through Paypal, the purchaser doesn't get the certificate to print out.. I would still need to mail it or email them and that could be a full day's time lag.
Carol

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Pete
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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by Pete » Mon Dec 12, 2011 7:15 pm

cabwy wrote:I looked at Spa Boom a month ago, and now I will admit that I "sped read" through it, but it looked like a hefty set up fee was required to establish a website.
Did either of you have this? Should I just call them and speak to them in person and see what the deal is?
Spaboom's Instant Gift Certificates can be integrated into your existing website. I don't think the setup fee is too much though I can't recall exactly how much. The setup fee for their Dynamic Website is higher but inline with the fees any professional web designer would charge.

You might want to call them - they'll be able to answer all of your questions and they're not aggressive sales people.

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by cabwy » Mon Dec 12, 2011 7:39 pm

Thanks Pete! I will call them, your info was very helpful to me. :D
Carol

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by moogie » Mon Dec 12, 2011 8:28 pm

athletica wrote:I just started using giftcardcafe.com. I like it. As far as I'm aware I paid a setup fee of approximately $30 and pay 4.95% on transactions.
When I was reading giftcardcafe's website today it said that in addition to the 4.95% you had to use either paypal or authorizenet which had an additional fee (and setup charges) but I don't know why you need those? Are you saying that you don't use either one of those and you are only charged the 4.95%?

Angie

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by mamajen » Tue Dec 13, 2011 5:38 am

I've been using Spaboom for years as well and have been very happy with them. I don't have one of their websites, I integrated the gift certificate page into my existing website and, like Pete, can't remember what setup fees were at the time.

Give them a call, they're always happy to help.

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by jdcan » Tue Dec 13, 2011 8:45 am

I use giftcardcafe with paypal. It adds up to almost 8%. I can sell packages with them.

I had gone to Spaboom first to ask about setting things up with them. I think I had bad luck with the person (not) helping me so I went with giftcardcafe. I haven't had any problems with them.

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by shivashiva » Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:42 am

I've tried to resist mentioning it because I think it's out of the price range of this thread and perhaps over-qualified, but MindBodyOnline gives you the ability to purchase gift certificates online and print them out (or the purchaser can email them to the recipient). It would also be your credit card processor (I find the fees very reasonable, usually around 2%), and your online scheduling system, as well as do a lot of your bookkeeping. The cost is $70 per month for 1-5 practitioners with a physical location ($45 if you're a single practitioner just doing outcalls).

So anyway, it might be overkill for what many of you are looking for. However, if you want a very powerful business management tool with many integrated features, including a bunch of auto-email features and integrates with Constant Contact (can you tell i like it? lol) it's worth looking into.
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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by akashafive » Tue Dec 13, 2011 11:40 am

moogie wrote: Since I am a sole practioner, I can't be available for people to drop by and buy gift certificates so I thought this might be a good alternative.

Angie
This is the exact same reason I started using giftcardcafe. I've only had two GC's purchased so far and I do have it set up to use with Paypal so I lose the 2.95% as soon as the GC is bought and paid for, but giftcardgcafe takes their cut at the end of the month from my credit card I keep on file. 8% is a big chunk but to me it is well worth it right now for me to be able to get GC sales and also sell packages online. (I signed up during a special when they were waiving the set up fee.) I've had no issues as of yet and I like that they let you create "Deals" that you can completely control and post to your social media profile. I did one for Small Business Saturday and even though I didn't have any takers, it was a neat learning experience!

Previously I just created a blank GC with instructions as a PDF, posted it on my website with a Paypal button and told people once I received notice of their payment, I'd give them a authorization number to put on the GC, this way they could print/fill it out themselves. I didn't have it up long so never had anyone give it a try, but I thought it was a nice compromise. :)
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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by moose_goose » Wed Dec 14, 2011 8:46 am

I used to go through SpaBoom for certificates, but during the holidays I was paying so much for the volume of certificates that I was selling.

I recently (March 2011) switched to SnapCerts http://www.snapcerts.com/home.htm - same concept as spa boom but so much simpler.
It's only $10/month and you can sell an unlimited amt of certificates.
This is what my clients see: https://salusstudio.snapcerts.com/purchase.asp

It's easy to add and delete services offered- say you're running a Black Friday weekend special, you can add it for just a few days then delete it when your sale is over.
You can edit the "fine print" on the certificate also, so I put something along the lines of 24 hr cancellation policy or certif is void, & allow 2 weeks for scheduling.

I've had no problems with them at all.

Also (just thought of this)- when they order the certificate, there is a field for them to enter the 3 digit security code. I believe spaboom doesn't offer that. I use Square for cc processing, and they require the 3 digit code for manual entries.

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by pueppi » Wed Dec 14, 2011 10:54 am

moose_goose wrote:I recently (March 2011) switched to SnapCerts http://www.snapcerts.com/home.htm - same concept as spa boom but so much simpler.
It's only $10/month and you can sell an unlimited amt of certificates.
This is what my clients see: https://salusstudio.snapcerts.com/purchase.asp
<snip>

You can edit the "fine print" on the certificate also, so I put something along the lines of 24 hr cancellation policy or certif is void, & allow 2 weeks for scheduling.
I really like this format. It looks absolutely simple.

Although it is not something I am interested in at this time, I have a few questions for future reference:
  • Do you have to use she service for a pre-determined length of time, or could someone use if for just the holidays?
  • Do you know if it allows you to put an expiration date for the certificates?
  • Do you have an example of what the certificates look like when they are "sent" to the recipient?
  • Is there an option for the buyer to only be allowed to select "services" only (not an "amount")?
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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by moose_goose » Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:00 am

pueppi wrote:
  • Do you have to use she service for a pre-determined length of time, or could someone use if for just the holidays?
  • Do you know if it allows you to put an expiration date for the certificates?
  • Do you have an example of what the certificates look like when they are "sent" to the recipient?
I'm not sure if you can just use it for the holidays- I wouldn't see why not, really. It would be just a matter of opening an acct and closing it when you're done using it??

Yes- you can set the exp date. I think it goes by days- so mine have a 365 day exp date on them.
Here's a link to a pdf, hope you can see it:

https://www.snapcerts.com/PDFCerts/71-5 ... 132955.pdf

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by cabwy » Thu Dec 15, 2011 12:47 pm

The snapcerts option sounds really good for someone who is just starting up a website ( me!) But, I don't understand one important point,, how would I get the payment from snapcerts? I can call them shortly but figured I might see a reply here sooner than when I can call..
Carol

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by moose_goose » Thu Dec 15, 2011 12:50 pm

cabwy wrote:The snapcerts option sounds really good for someone who is just starting up a website ( me!) But, I don't understand one important point,, how would I get the payment from snapcerts? I can call them shortly but figured I might see a reply here sooner than when I can call..
you take the credit card payment when the certificate is bought- snap certs doesn't process the payments

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by cabwy » Thu Dec 15, 2011 1:18 pm

ok, now i see, I DO need to be able to handle cc processing. I think square is my first choice.. gosh, this is keeping me busy! :lol:
Last edited by cabwy on Fri Dec 16, 2011 7:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Carol

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by moose_goose » Thu Dec 15, 2011 1:20 pm

cabwy wrote:ok, now i see, I DO need to ba able to handle cc processing. I think square is my first choice.. gosh, this is keeping me busy! :lol:
I've got Square & I am a big fan of it!

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by cabwy » Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:32 am

Update: I am now using the Square One card swiper and I love it! I haven't had to use it much, but it is nice to be able to offer it as a service. I like that I can manually enter the credit card info, too.
Carol

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by PremoMT » Sat Feb 18, 2012 1:24 pm

Moose_goose,

how does the snapcert appear on your website? is it a link to a microsite?
My Website www.premospa.com

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by moose_goose » Sat Feb 18, 2012 9:24 pm

PremoMT wrote:Moose_goose,

how does the snapcert appear on your website? is it a link to a microsite?
Yup. You can see it at http://www.salusstudio.com/
My SnapCerts site is https://salusstudio.snapcerts.com/purchase.asp

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by squash_blsm » Sun Feb 19, 2012 7:07 am

I think you need to look at what the better bargain is...

Spa boom is a 5% fee and you have to process the transaction (so add in your cc fees). And they said no setup fee last I checked
Except for the set-up fee Gift Card Cafe is similarly priced at 4.95%
Snap Cert is $9.95/mo flat rate - and you have to process the transaction with them too.
So if you sell say 3 or more certs @ $65 a month then Snap Cert wins!
BUT - there could be many months that you have NO sales.
The Certificate templates look similar on all
Client can print or email to recipient on all too, right?

At Christmas and Mother's Day I am sure you would get at least a few extra sales from last minute shoppers.

And if you don't yet do Gift Certificates at all this might be an easy way to start
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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by moose_goose » Sun Feb 19, 2012 6:21 pm

squash_blsm wrote:I think you need to look at what the better bargain is...

Spa boom is a 5% fee and you have to process the transaction (so add in your cc fees). And they said no setup fee last I checked
Except for the set-up fee Gift Card Cafe is similarly priced at 4.95%
Snap Cert is $9.95/mo flat rate - and you have to process the transaction with them too.
So if you sell say 3 or more certs @ $65 a month then Snap Cert wins!
BUT - there could be many months that you have NO sales.
The Certificate templates look similar on all
Client can print or email to recipient on all too, right?

At Christmas and Mother's Day I am sure you would get at least a few extra sales from last minute shoppers.

And if you don't yet do Gift Certificates at all this might be an easy way to start
I had been doing gcs with Spaboom for years- the reason I switched to SnapCerts was the high volume I sell during Mother's Day, Christmas, and I also run an "open house special" one weekend a year which generates a TON of online sales (in the $1,000's). Even if I don't sell any other month of the year, it still works out to a better deal with them, and it's also very predictable- $120/year

I can only speak for Snap & Spaboom, but both of them the purchaser can print or email. With SnapCert there is also the option of them choosing the Spa to snail mail out the certificate - I charge them an extra $2 to do that.

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Re: Instant Gift Certificates from your website

Post by ALMT » Thu Nov 07, 2013 6:49 pm

moose_goose wrote:I can only speak for Snap & Spaboom, but both of them the purchaser can print or email.
It seems you've now switched to Bodywork Buddy. I'm considering that, along with other options. Why did you switch and how do you feel about Bodywork Buddy?

Thanks!
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