Gift cards comprise a $160 billion dollar industry that continues to grow every year. Though spending is expected to be down in 2017 for the first time in a decade, gift cards are still the most popular type of gift, and have been for many years.

According to, 61% of those polled say gift cards are their preferred type of gifts. They’re simple, they fit everyone perfectly, and most importantly, they offer a wealth of marketing and sales opportunities to restaurants.

Is your restaurant offering gift cards? CAKE Point of Sale allows users to buy, activate, and redeem gift cards easily from your POS system. Take a look at why retailers of every kind are having happier holidays by offering gift cards to customers.


A Gift for Restaurants

Restaurant gift cards are easily the most popular category of gift cards year over year, with more than 34% of all gift cards sold being for dining out experiences. If you think that gift cards are only for big chain restaurants, think again. With CAKE, restaurants of any size can sell and activate gift cards through their point of sale systems.

Restaurants have the opportunity to cash in on a $54 billion and growing annual gift card market. This figure spans all genders and age groups, meaning every restaurant has the opportunity to make more sales with gift cards. For example – 69% of women are more likely to wish for gift cards, compared with 53% of men. Despite this differential, men plan on outspending women $162.01 vs. $144.62 respectively. Perhaps this is because 41% of men crave gift cards they can use to buy electronics.


The Growth of the Gift Card Market

With more than $1 billion in unredeemed gift cards each year, there are even businesses popping up to ensure gift cards are redeemed before they expire. Many companies now exist to resell gift cards in exchange for cash, creating a secondary market for those more interested in cash than cards.

But for restaurants, gift cards turn into cash for your bottom line. Gift card recipients tend to spend an extra 38% in addition to the value of the original card. And since most holiday gift cards are given in slower months, it’s possible that giving gift cards and incentives to spend them can keep customers old and new coming into your restaurant all year long.


Point of Sale Systems Make it Easy

CAKE Point of Sale gives restaurants of every size the ability to offer, activate, and redeem gift cards simply. By offering an incentive like free money towards gift cards with purchase, you have the ability to multiply your earnings, retaining existing customers even as you reach out to new ones. Gift cards are tiny billboards for your restaurant, offering great marketing of your brand in addition to added sales. When customers give friends a gift card to your restaurant, they’re also giving a powerful word of mouth referral that brings in more business.