Trends in Gift Card Usage

Trends in Gift Card Usage

A gift card is a money card that has a specified value meant to be used in a store in lieu of cash or physical money. A retailer or a bank, whichever party is appropriate for the transaction, usually issues a gift card. In some countries, a gift card is referred to as a gift certificate, a gift voucher or a gift token.

Gift Cards: Then & Now

The first gift card to be used as a means of payment was reportedly introduced by Blockbuster Entertainment in the mid-1990’s. From that day on, many companies followed in its footstep and began introducing the gift card to consumers. Today, they are widely used by many not only as gifts but to gain discounts from products and store sales.  This is especially helpful for avid shoppers who are always on the lookout for bargains at their favourite stores.

Essentially, a gift card resembles a credit card with its plastic material and size. However, many retailers now use paper or email as a gift card to reduce both production and distribution cost, as well as to bring more convenience to consumers by making the cards more pocket and purse friendly. Gift cards can also include the name of the institution and recipient to make them more official and personal.

Trends in Gift Card Usage

  • Digital gift cards. Aside from the tangible gift card that we can touch and use in a ‘brick and mortar’ store, there is also the digital gift card that users can access via smartphone, computer or tablet. As a result of this new trend, marketers are aiming to enhance online gift giving. The shift from offline to digital online gifts is giving marketers a bigger opportunity up increase brand recognition. Some consumers also prefer a digital gift card over a physical card for fear of losing or misplacing it.
  • Bundle Products. Companies sometimes consider product bundles in their marketing efforts to capture larger audiences. Instead of selling their products per item, digital products are also encouraged to be purchased to make the tie-in of both physical and digital products.
  • Loyalty Programs. Consumers who feel they get more than what they pay for tend to become more loyal to brands. Loyalty programs do this by offering deals and promotions to customers based on their purchasing history. They are an effective tool in creating value for customers at the same time as collecting valuable market information about consumer spending habits. Preferring the idea of exchanging gifts online also reduces the cost for both parties. On the part of the business, it lessens the risk of customer dissatisfaction, lost or misplaced items, and other delivery concerns. It also reduces cost on packaging and delivery. With customers, they can save the expense they would have spent for the shipping fee or the product itself. More often than not, giving a gift online costs a very minimal price.
  • Limited Luxury. With holidays, gatherings, and events in every corner of the world no matter what time of the year it is, there’s always a reason to celebrate, but not everyone can afford it. Gift cards signal the same intention as a physical gift, but not in a specific sense. Rather, the receiver of a gift card can choose whatever gift he or she likes, as long as it is within the budget range of the gift card. This allows the giver to give the person a gift but also enables the latter to choose what they like. Online Bitcoin Brokerage in Canada Online Bitcoin Brokerage in Canada

Bitcoin is a form of cryptocurrency (or online payment system) where business transactions are completed using this form of virtual money. Use of virtual money is significantly dependent on trust between the two parties involved in a transaction. Notably, bitcoin has gradually emerged as a trusted means of online payments leading to a substantial acceptance in various parts of the world.

By having a global presence, the use of bitcoin has enabled the rise of various options that are used to facilitate the use of bitcoins. In this regard, Flexepin has emerged as a popular and widely acclaimed channel for the purchase of Bitcoin. Particularly, Flexepin is continuously expanding and has recently been added bitcoin brokerage website in Canada with the capability to purchase bitcoins with flexibility and ease. Through, any Canadian resident can purchase bitcoins ranging from $20-$500 by using a Flexepin Voucher. These vouchers can be purchased at numerous retailers in Canada who are open on a 24/7 basis and conveniently available nationwide.

Using the Flexepin voucher code, a user is able to have the bitcoin purchased sent to their online wallets within minutes. Consequently, the user does not risk their personal bank or credit card details online.

By 2014, already more than 76,000 merchants accepted bitcoins in as a payment method. Of these, 340 were local to Canada. However, the use of bitcoin as a payment method doubled in 2015, thanks in part to the popularity of cashless methods of payment. With this in mind, it is observable that the use of cryptocurrency (especially bitcoins) is gaining popularity with its ease of use and the security it offers.

Another statistical trend that has gained traction is the use of bitcoins to pay salaries for Canadian workers. According to The Canadian Press, there is a significant rise in the number of workers who prefer to use Bitcoin as a mode of salary payment. Consequently, this demand has given rise to the value of one bitcoin being exchanged for $1,000.

All in all, it is evident that the use of bitcoins in Canada has emerged as a growing trend as a mode of payment. With the facilitation of Flexepin voucher codes, numerous Flexepin retailers, and the adoption of Flexepin in; it has become significantly easier for any person to purchase bitcoins for use in online payments.

Growth of mobile wallets

Growth of mobile wallets

Mobile wallets: game on

Not everyone may have seen it coming, but mobile usage has been reaping higher rates year on year and it is making a significant impact on consumer’s lives and spending habits. Despite the increase in smartphone services, such as virtual wallets, none is yet to take the consumer world by storm. Many consumers still prefer traditional banking, however, digital wallets are getting a lot of attention from avid mobile users all over the world.

Many subscription services have embraced the changes that come with new technologies, and upgraded their payment methods to allow for mobile payments. These online services and some retailers include Amazon, Skype, Box TV, and, of course, Apple, which is said to have started the mobile billing trend for subscriptions.

Mobile payment, the “new wave of growth”, has seen 15% of consumers use their mobile wallets during the second half of last year. Experts are saying this percentage will increase to 22% in the next six months. Despite questions remaining about security and privacy, consumers worldwide are turning to mobile payments for subscription-based services because of both convenience and flexibility. Likewise, companies worldwide are discovering opportunities to fulfil the newly found needs of the global mobile consumers.

Where’s Wallet?

The number of digital wallets available throughout the world is vast and ever growing. Flexepin is an online payment option that lets customers top-up their account with cash, to transact value online safely and securely. Flexepin caters to various kinds of consumers and purposes, including topping up an account or wallet, online shopping, settling bills, checking out of counters or physical kiosks and performing micro-payments.

With aims to demonstrate a neutral outlook in the industry, Flexepin offers its services not only to online consumers but also distributors, merchants and business owners. Its core mission is to help the online marketplace grow globally and increase the sales turnover of businesses. It does this by helping both distributors and merchants increase their visibility and expand their customer base.

With the growing demand for both basic and complex daily financial services, Flexepin strives to serve its customers by providing quality financial services for everyday needs. 

Coinsquare now accepting Flexepin vouchers

Coinsquare now accepting Flexepin vouchers

Effective today, Coinsquare is accepting Flexepin to enable people to buy Bitcoin, Ether, and more cryptocurrencies instantly with cash or debit at more than 8,500 retail locations across Canada and Australia.

Flexepins are voucher receipts bearing a secure 16-digit PIN number redeemable in any Coinsquare account. They can be paid for with cash or debit and are available in a range of pre-determined amounts.

Virgile Rostand, Coinsquare Founder and Managing Director, says: “Flexepin allows anyone to get Bitcoin and Ether in their wallets at the speed of blockchains. There is no withholding and it follows a very straightforward process. Users are also able to tap directly in the full functionality and security of Coinsquare’s trading platform, which is also offering one of the lowest fee structures on the market. Coinsquare is providing this new instant funding method after becoming the first exchange globally to offer both physical gold and silver, ethereum and other cryptos trading for Bitcoin in one single account.”

About Coinsquare

Coinsquare is a digital currency exchange combining forex, precious metals, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It features advanced risk management controls, full order books, coin-to-coin instant transactions, cutting hedge account security and a custom-built high-performance trade matching engine. Coinsquare also offers physical precious metal holdings that can be used to lower the exposure to the volatility of cryptocurrencies.

Coinsquare was founded and is being managed by Virgile Rostand, Ph.D, who held previous positions as financial engineer and financial application system consultant. Virgile also holds a Ph.D. in Mathematics from Laval University and a Master of Mathematical Finance from the University of Toronto.

Coinsquare is a federally chartered canadian company.

Flexepin is a product of Flexewallet Pty Ltd, AFSL 448066.

Media contact Virgile Rostand, Founder & Managing Director
Twitter: @Coinsquare

Who benefit the most from coupons?

Who benefit the most from coupons?

Vouchers or coupons always seem like a great deal in the eyes of a consumer. Some will even base their buying strategy around it to get the most reduced or optimised price for an item. What are the interests of companies in creating such promotions? Are they benefiting from it?

Coupons benefit both parties

Despite clever customer behaviour to source specific items, in aggregate companies do benefit from giving out vouchers. Obviously, they would not allow them to circulate in the marketplace if they could not access a certain level of ROI. But how does it work? And how do companies get a return on this “investment”?

Studies show that first and foremost, companies use this marketing tactic to capture their customers’ attention. It helps them stand out from competitors and offer something that customers can readily afford and are willing to do. They are also a way to advertise new products through free samples or trials. Furthermore, offering coupons can promote customer loyalty by showing avid consumers that they are being valued. But primarily, companies use vouchers to generate repeat business and promote their brand to customers.

Companies using vouchers

Novatti Pty Ltd, a leading platform specialised in mobile payment solution claims that consumers do like vouchers. Specifically, while printed vouchers are very tangible, vouchers displayed on smartphones fulfil the same need for the consumer. Vouchers act as a receipt, and can be stored or forwarded to others. When consumers receive a voucher, they feel that they have received something for their payment, which tends to increase their satisfaction towards their buy.

Amazon used to send a $25 Amazon voucher to customers for every successful referral with a minimum transaction of $10,000 within 90 days of opening a Currencies Direct account. This offer is a great example showing how a specific offer would benefit everyone included in the process; the referrer, the referee and the company obviously, happy to pay for the acquisition new valuable customers.

Vouchers also represent an additional payment method in the marketplace, helping to generate more sales overall. Businesses that try to reach consumers globally always take into consideration the methods that their customers use to process a payment. Allowing vouchers to issue payment can enable entrepreneurs and e-commerce companies to reach some remote segments where consumers don’t have the capacity to use credit cards or when a business’s payment gateway doesn’t accept credit cards from specific countries.

Trends in Online Privacy

Trends in Online Privacy

With technology constantly evolving and improving, the incredible growth of the internet over the last decade and the ever increasing popularity of mobile use, governments and advertisers are becoming extremely interested in knowing what you are up to when browsing or shopping online. Online privacy has become a serious issue that needs to be addressed.

Have you ever noticed ads popping up on your screen directly connected with your previous searches? Have you ever noticed how after visiting a website, you are being re-targeted by this same website everywhere you go? These are signs that your web activity is being tracked.

Does it affect you? How to remain private?

Companies and marketers are always looking for new methods to increase their pool of customers and overall market share. While there are already many existing methods, marketers are still finding new, faster ways to gather information about online users. While there are quantities of tools & software to take into account, we take a look at most evident; Cookies.

Computer cookies

A cookie is a set of data sent by a website to a browser and is used to store information about the user. In doing so, a customer’s web browsing behaviour is tracked to offer better search results or more accurate recommendations. For instance, a cookie would remember a shopping cart from a previous session, or would propose to fill automatically fields such as name, address, or credit card details. However, the other side of the coin is that they also enable companies to track your digital whereabouts. So while turning off your browser cookies can eliminate further tracking, it will also display search results less relevant to your personal needs.

Smartphones are no different.

Interestingly enough, a study shows that in 2015, 33% of online transactions happened through mobile connections, while mobile traffic represented 50.3% of the overall e-commerce traffic.

Blocking third-party cookies

Fortunately, every web browser would allow its users to turn off the third-party cookies tracking function. Without cookies, marketers will find it much harder to monitor your activity. While it is not a bulletproof solution in itself, it will deprive advertisers of the conventional techniques they use to build a customer profile out of your activity.

Online Shopping

Most checkout pages are generally well secured. However, you’ll find it hard to feel completely safe when transacting online using your debit or credit card details. The industry is aware of it, and that’s why the vast majority of e-commerce websites are now accepting alternative payment methods to cards.

Alternative payment solutions

Digital wallets allow you to make a free bank transfer to a digital account, from which you can then pay or deposit at multiple websites without entering your bank details. It generally takes few days to upload funds from your bank into your wallet, but once loaded, they guarantee a high level of safety.

Cash vouchers

Using cash vouchers is a very simple solution to a complicated problem. Simply, you can purchase a voucher at a point of sale (usually at convenient stores or petrol stations) for a fixed amount of money, then redeem the amount online at your favourite merchant.

This solution represents a certain advantage as your banking details will never be displayed online, so it ensures your privacy from a financial fraud perspective. Indeed, most voucher solutions provide you with a pin code that you need to insert at your favourite merchants to redeem. Easy.

While these days it would take a long process to remain completely private online, some easy steps such as disabling cookies and using alternative payment solutions would put you on the right track to avoid the basic tracking practises.


Credit Cards v PayPal. Which is More Secure?

Credit Cards v PayPal. Which is More Secure?

As the global marketplaces expand with businesses trying to fit into the online payment industry, so too, are payment methods starting to become flexible and allow consumers more choice. Without searching for the most widely used payment options, PayPal and Credit Cards (namely Visa & Mastercard) make it to the top of the list. But which one is preferred and which is safer?

Customer Concerns

Consumers are rightly concerned about the protection of their personal information, and of course, the safety of using a particular payment service for online transactions. Purchasing online can be tricky especially if you still prefer the cash-on-hand method, but online shopping can be addictive once you get the hang of it!

Based on consumer surveys, almost 20% of consumers do not buy online and prefer instead to walk into a physical store because of security concerns such as identity theft. From a more recent consumer study, results show that consumers who hesitate to shop online went from 20% up to 34%, while 29% have the same reaction towards shopping in “bricks and mortar” stores.

Credit Card as a Payment Option

Essentially payment options, no matter what they are, seem safer when the customer knows the seller or merchant. Consumers prefer credit cards in the long run because initially, they do not have to subscribe to any account and if they know the seller well enough, using their credit card to pay doesn’t present any risk. Not having any idea how PayPal works or the mere fact that it exists is another reason consumers may favour the plastic.

A study by Bizrate Insights showed that 62% of consumers do not feel secure giving out their personal information when using their credit card to purchase an item in a physical store. A reason for this apprehension from consumers might be that giving out personal information has been the source of most data breaches in recent years. 60% of those have the same response towards websites and 65% on mobile retail sites.

PayPal as a Payment Option

Online security studies show that shoppers feel PayPal is safer to buy with than a credit card. A recent report also stated that PayPal has been effective in reducing customers’ online security concerns because they have proactively embraced consumer protections. Online buyers have rated this payment solution company as the second most trusted retail payment service, as it works faster than inputting account numbers every time you buy something online. On the other hand, businesses often overlook the benefits of using PayPal when performing B2B transactions due to their perception of PayPal as a service for end-users.

The Verdict

No consumer is 100% safe when it comes to shopping online and likewise, no payment service guarantees full security and safety. In the end, security is largely dependent on how you, as a customer, treat your online accounts and credit card information.

PayPal has been named as the largest online payment system in the industry, but it still has various cons. As for your PayPal and credit card accounts, treat them as you would a traditional bank account. Make it a habit to check your accounts religiously, and always update your computer security software.

Who Uses Vouchers Anyway?

Who Uses Vouchers Anyway?

What are vouchers?

By general definition, a voucher is a small printed piece of paper with unique identifying information (such as a PIN or barcode) that entitles the holder to a discount, or that may be exchanged for goods or services. It is also a document used to prove that a transaction has been made. In business, a voucher is a piece of paper that acts as a receipt to claim a product or a service, usually in stores, at events, entertainment places, and others. It is evidence of a payment made normally online using a mobile device, computer, or tablet. Websites offer vouchers for different purposes, which can be redeemed by their users.

Different kinds of vouchers
Listed are common vouchers used worldwide:

  • Accounting vouchers:
    • Cash vouchers (debit voucher for cash payment and credit voucher for cash receipts)
    • Non-cash vouchers or transfer vouchers
  • Gift vouchers
  • Discount vouchers
  • School vouchers
  • Meal voucher

Different uses of vouchers

  1. Business: Marketers use different kinds of vouchers to achieve their business goals such as the offer of discount vouchers, promo vouchers, gift vouchers, and others.
  2. Tourism: Vouchers used for tourism purposes are usually provided to enable access to free tourist activities where the consumer cannot avail of the service beforehand. Nowadays, when a reservation is completed on the Internet, customers are given a voucher to claim their order. The customer can print this voucher to show the service provider as proof of reservation and/or confirmation.
  3. Accounting: A voucher is a document usually made when a vendor invoice is received and after the invoice is successfully matched with the corresponding Purchase Order. In the internal system of a business, it represents an intention to pay the vendor of the amount presented in the voucher.
  4. Mobile phones: On mobile devices, a voucher, also known as a credit or load, is a card/paper receipt that uses a PIN number to recharge a SIM card with phone money used for call credits.

Users of vouchers
Most voucher users are consumers who go about shopping online via their mobile device or computer. They can be used to pay for an order  of goods or services in lieu of real cash. They can also be used in person when the consumer has placed an order online and the company sends the user a voucher to be presented before availing of the service.

Vouchers have been used as a marketing strategy for some years now. In fact, a lot of families rely on vouchers to make discounts on their everyday purchases, in a hope of decreasing their expenses. In fact, research claims that an average adult in Australia uses up to three vouchers every month for a variety of purposes. These include saving money on supermarket shopping, meals and other purchases.

Flexepin is a cash top-up voucher that can be purchased at a range of convenience stores and kiosks can be redeemed to add credit to an account, load a wallet to pay for goods and services online, using a unique PIN. The Flexepin cash top-up voucher is a product of Flexewallet Pty Ltd, a property of Novatti Pty Ltd.

Buy Bitcoin at over 4,000 stores around Australia using Flexepin

Buy Bitcoin at over 4,000 stores around Australia using Flexepin

Coin Loft, an Australian Bitcoin agency, has empowered their customers to purchase Bitcoin using Flexepin from thousands of stores across Australia. Coin Loft’s service requires a Bitcoin purchaser to verify their identity.

Flexepin cash top-up vouchers can be purchased in retail outlets such as newsagents, convenience stores, petrol stations and travel kiosks. The unique 16-digit Flexepin code is then entered on the Coin Loft website to complete the Bitcoin purchase. Flexepin vouchers can be purchased in denominations ranging from $20 to $500.

Redemption via the Coin Loft website will exchange the Australian dollar value to the Bitcoin equivalent less commission and a voucher processing fee. The process requires customers to register using two different forms of identification to ensure a secure transfer occurs and lowers the risk of money laundering and fraud. Purchasing Bitcoin using Flexepin is also limited to $500 per week per customer.

David Temple, Co-founder of Rhino Loft said: “We are excited to be making it even easier for Australians to own Bitcoin. The integration with Flexepin has instantly increased our reach and provides our users with another payment method to complete their purchase”.

A recent PwC report has identified more than 700 companies entering the blockchain FinTech space and states that 25 of these are likely to emerge as industry leaders. “Collaborating with other FinTech companies improves Australia’s ecosystem and ensures we can compete on a global stage. This partnership will further strengthen our Flexepin product and provide consumers with more options to engage in the digital field” said Peter Cook, CEO of Novatti Group.

Both Coin Loft and Flexepin are headquartered and operational in Australia, and are expected to grow with new customer segments as a result of this partnership.

About Coin Loft:
Coin Loft is a registered business of Rhino Loft Pty Ltd. Rhino Loft was started in 2012 as a software solution provider. Coin Loft was established to provide Australians with a quick, easy and competitively priced service for purchasing bitcoin. Rhino Loft is an industry member of ADCCA, a supporter of the Bitcoin Foundation and an active participant in the Australian Bitcoin community.

About Flexepin:
Flexepin is a product owned and operated by Flexewallet Pty Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Novatti Group Ltd (ASX:NOV). Flexewallet holds an AFSL for Non-Cash Payments. Flexepin cash voucher is a prepaid voucher to make secure, hassle-free online payments. Flexepin can be purchased at a variety of locations and outlets globally, in various currencies and pre-determined dominations.

BitAccess Launches Instant Bitcoin Purchases at 6,000 Locations in Canada

BitAccess Launches Instant Bitcoin Purchases at 6,000 Locations in Canada

Today, BitAccess is excited to announce the launch of Bitcoin purchases at thousands of storefronts across Canada.

BitAccess customers can now purchase bitcoin using a Flexepin voucher. Available in 6,000 Canadian retail locations, Flexepin can be bought using cash or a debit card.

Buying a Flexepin Bitcoin voucher is like purchasing a gift card. It is bought from a store cashier. Once the purchase is made, a voucher is provided in the form of a receipt. In 60 seconds, the receipt can then be redeemed for the cash equivalent of bitcoin.

In just three steps, you can buy bitcoin:

  1. Find a store by visiting our outlet locator page.
  2. Pay the store cashier for a Flexepin voucher.
  3. Redeem the voucher at bitAccess’ website to add bitcoin to a digital wallet of your choice.

Flexepin allows you to buy up to $250 worth of bitcoin per day. They come in $10, $30, $50, $100 or $250 vouchers.

About BitAccess:
BitAccess’s mission is to provide people and businesses around the world with access to the future digital money technology. The company has installed Bitcoin ATMs in half a dozen countries. BitAccess is developing digital currency technologies that are secure, accessible and easy-to-use.

About Flexepin:
Flexepin is a product owned and operated by Flexewallet Pty Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Novatti Group Ltd (ASX:NOV). Flexewallet holds an AFSL for Non-Cash Payments. Flexepin cash voucher is a prepaid voucher to make secure, hassle-free online payments. Flexepin can be purchased at a variety of locations and outlets globally, in various currencies and pre-determined dominations.