Brand Partners
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Choice Gifts: How to Give Every Corporate Client the Custom Gift Experience They Dream Of

March 15, 2024
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Corporate gifting is an industry still riding the growth wave spurred by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. With packed in-person offices clearing out overnight, people teams turned to sending swag and merch to remote crews to help boost spirits, foster a positive culture, and stay connected. In lieu of face-to-face schmoozing with clients and customers, CEOs started wowing them from afar with surprising gifts.

In short, gifts played a big part in stoking connections and keeping them alive. 

Now, four years out from this sudden and dramatic shift in how and where people work, corporate gifting surprisingly hasn’t waned. Instead, it’s an industry continuing to post up impressive year-over-year stats like 13.2% CAGR and a predicted $306 billion market size in 2024. Gifting went from intermittent afterthought to unlocked super power for hordes of companies in the US. 

What the heck does all of this mean for you?

It means that if you’re running an ecommerce brand, getting a slice of this pie is easier than you think with the right tools on your side. Zest is the only way to automate a fully branded corporate gifting experience directly from your website so you can own more of these big-dollar relationships (and more profit margin). 

This all-in-one-platform also unlocks the ability to offer your corporate customers their own private storefronts stocked with products specific to their goals, like Choice Gifts.   

Read on to learn why Choice Gifts is a unique tool that could unlock your brand’s corporate gifting potential and bring you in on this growing industry. 

What Is a Choice Gift (and Why Should I Care)?

Historically, corporate gifting has been fraught with friction. Customers are met with dusty ol’ forms they have to fill out and submit or, even worse, they’re tasked with picking up the phone, making a call, and enduring the back-and-forth until the end of time. Even more complexities are thrown into the mix when corporate customers want to offer their recipients somethin that’s not quite off-the-shelf. 

Corporate gifts are most impactful when the gift is something the recipient will actually enjoy and use. When the recipient unwraps something they hate, well, that’s not ideal for anyone. In fact, just one in five corporate gift recipients like their gift enough to keep it. 

One trend in ensuring recipients enjoy their surprises (and gifting budgets don’t go to waste) is offering recipients a choice.

For example, instead of sending out a one-size-fits-all gift to every teammate, employers are opting to send out an e-gift containing several options each unique person can pick from — and it’s wildly successful. 

In 2023, Kaiser Permanente opted to give nurses a choice of gift to celebrate National Nurses Week, and the response was overwhelmingly positive. This small shift in gifting technique beat gift acceptance rate expectations by 20.3% and increased year-over-year gift acceptance by 36.3%.

Kaiser Permanente increased corporate gift acceptance by offering choices to recipients.

This magic was made possible with Zest’s Choice Gifts. This feature was made to erase the typical friction of offering the gift of choice for both gifters and the brands they’re gifting. Zest Partners are able to set up a gift with options and automate the rest of the process in just minutes, which is a huge change from the endless back-and-forth of yore. 

For gifters, all they have to do is share their custom gift link with intended recipients and rest assured that everyone will get their chosen gift (and some intense joy). So, how can your store stand out and offer this trending option to corporate clients? Check it out.

How to Create Choice Gifts for Your Corporate Customers

Take advantage of this modern gifting feature and attract more corporate customers in just a few steps. 

Heads up! You’re gonna need a Zest Partners account to set up a Choice Gift. If your store isn’t in the club yet, head here and let’s chat!

The Choice Gifts you create are, essentially, customized bundles of your products. One created, they’re going to act the same as any other product you offer in your Zest storefront. We recommend limiting the Choice Gifts you create to six options to avoid any decision fatigue with the end recipients.

Step 1: Create a Choice Gift

Pop open your Zest Partners account and head to the Choice Gifts tab. Click the “New Choice Gifts” button near the top right-hand corner. 

Step 2: Add the Details

The next step includes filling in all the deets. Give this Choice Gift a name, write a short description, set the price, and add an image. The image, title, and description will be visible to the end gift recipient, so it’s a good idea to run these details by your client first to ensure they relay the appropriate message.

We recommend making the image your client’s logo or, if you want to make it clear that this is a gift with choices inside, an image of several of the products together. We don’t recommend uploading an image of just one of the products, as that won’t indicate that this is a gift of choice. 

The price you set in this step will be what the gifter is charged regardless of the item their recipient chooses. And don’t worry, the gift recipient does not see the price. 

For instance, imagine your Choice Gift includes an item priced at $12 and an item priced at $15. If you set the price of the Choice Gift at $15, the gifter will pay $15 for each gift, even if their recipient chooses the $12 item. 

Step 3: Add the Products to Recipients Will Pick From

Once the details are dusted off, it’s time to add the products that your client’s recipients can pick from. We recommend including a variety of options within roughly the same price range.

To add products that are already a part of a Zest storefront, click the “Select Products” button near the top right of this module. You’ll be shown a list of all your active products. Check the boxes beside the items you want to include, then click “Select.”

To add products that are not yet active in your Zest account, click “Import New Products.” You’ll be shown a list of all the products in your Shopify account with the tag “zest-gift.” If you want to import an item from your Shopify account but you don’t see it in this list, head to your Shopify and double check it has the “zest-gift” tag. 

Once a Choice Gift has all its product choices added to it, make sure to click “Save” near the bottom left of the page. 

Step 4: Preview the Choice Gift

Double check that the Choice Gift looks good to go! Click back in your main Choice Gifts tab and click the “E-gift Preview” button beside the Choice Gift you just created. Paste the link into a separate tab and start unwrapping.

The gift note, card, and gift wrap colors will be set by your client when they send the gift, but this is a great way to ensure the products are displaying correctly. 

Step 5: Create a Custom Storefront for Your Client

Now that your bundle of products are set up as a single gift, it’s time to make it shoppable. To enable your corporate client (and nobody else) to send this gift to recipients, create a Custom Storefront just for them. 

Click into the Storefronts tab in the left-hand menu, and click “Create Storefront.” You’ll be prompted to give the storefront a name. For ease and simplicity, we typically keep these storefront names pretty short and sweet by sticking with just the company name for your client. 

Custom Storefronts are a huge differentiator for your brand and give you total flexibility in making a bespoke corporate gifting experience for every one of your clients. Include custom bulk discounts, shipping discounts, and more depending on the pricing you’ve agree upon with each unique customer you’re working with.

Plus, adding finishing touches like a branded banner for the header and custom gift card designs makes it feel like a truly special experience for your customer. This is a fool-proof way to create trust and foster loyalty with this client. 

Step 6: Add the Choice Gift to the Custom Storefront

It’s finally time to stock your client’s storefront with the products they want to gift. To add a Choice Gift to the storefront, click the “Select Products” button in the Product Listings module. 

Scroll through the active products and check the box next to the Choice Gift you created for this client. Then, click the "Select" button. Your Choice Gift should be safe and sound in the product listing.

The best part of all this is that once a storefront is created for a client, you can continue to add more products to it over time. Add more Choice Gifts for different occasions, customized items, and more. This storefront will become their go-to gifting destination. 

Once the Custom Storefront is configured to meet the client’s needs, click the “Save Changes” button near the top right-hand corner of the page. 

Step 6: Share the Storefront With Your Client

The Choice Gift is uploaded. The Custom Storefront is live. Now it’s time to share this private shopping experience with your client so they can get to gifting. 

Note: If the Custom Storefront’s visibility is private, you will need to add the email addresses of your client and anyone else who will need to access this storefront for gifting. 

Preview this storefront by copying the link, pasting in another tab, and basking in the glory of modern corporate gifting.

You corporate client will be able to customize this e-gift with a custom designed gift card, logo, e-gift wrapping colors, and personalized gift notes. They can come back to their very own store any time they need to send this gift again

Stand out With Choice Gifts and Custom Storefronts

The goal of anyone sending a gift — corporate or otherwise — is to delight their recipient with a little something special. Historically, this is quite the feat in the world of corporate gifting due to the lack of flexibility and outdated technology. 

When it comes to making large groups happy, it’s nearly impossible for corporate gifters to find the perfect one-size-fits-all gift. To solve this conundrum, a common fallback is ye olde gift card. However gift cards have the tendency to feel cold and thoughtless, and, ultimately, they’re a forgettable gesture that doesn’t hit the goal of any thoughtful gifter. 

Choice Gifts in Zest empower corporate gifters to finally provide thoughtful products that are memorable and meaningful. Offering this uber custom gifting option aligns with modern needs and goals for gifters and their recipients, and it’s just another way you can set your store apart as the corporate gifting destination in this growing market. 

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Liz Lorge
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