If you’re looking for a way to improve your bottom line, you should be selling gift cards. Gift cards allow you to take money up front and deliver merchandise later when the gift card holder redeems the gift card.

Gift cards allow gift givers to buy a present for a recipient without having to know what that person’s tastes are. They’re perfect for that friend or relative who is hard to buy a gift for. Recipients love gift cards because they’re not going to receive a gift that they don’t want. They won’t have to deal with the hassles of returning a gift to the store. They can simply go to the store and purchase the gift they really want.

There are two ways that gift card numbers can be encoded on the card. The number can be encoded within a magnetic stripe on the back of the card. The other type of gift card has a barcode printed on it. If you’re going to buy gift cards that are encoded with a magnetic stripe, you will need to make sure the gift card company encodes them in a way that meets the software developer’s specifications. It is not a given that all magnetic stripes can be decoded by all software. Gift cards with a barcode are the easiest to implement because they do not require special hardware to read them. Your point of scale scanner can be used to scan the barcode on this type of gift card. A barcode also allows them to be read in a multitude of Point of Sale Systems.

Before the gift card maker creates a large number of gift cards, you will want to get samples of the gift cards. You will need to test the cards to make sure the numbers can be read by the software you are using.

Depending on what state you are in, you will want to make sure the gift card expiration dates comply with the law.

One of the best benefits of gift cards is it will increase your holiday sales or even sales related to special events, such as birthdays, weddings and anniversaries. Many retailers make a larger percentage of their sales during the holidays. This is one more way to increase holidays even more.

Gift cards are appropriate for a wide variety of businesses, not just apparel or electronics retailers. If you are not selling gift cards, you are leaving money on the table.