21 October 2022
‘Huge step forward for Exeter’ as new digital Exeter Independent Gift Card goes live
Supporting local has just got easier with the launch of the digital version of the Exeter independent gift card, and a brand-new look.
Exeter is one of the first cities in the South West to have its own digital gift card. Digital gift cards are sent to the recipient as a text or email, the recipient can then add the balance of the Exeter Independent Gift Card to their digital wallet and make their purchase using their phone, to make a contactless payment in-store.
The new-look physical Exeter Independent Gift Card features a new design on the front of the card and enhanced eco credentials. Instead of a plastic card, the new physical Exeter Independent Gift Card is produced on FSC certified material, and once the magnetic strip is removed, is both compostable and biodegradable.
A business which accepts the Exeter Independent Gift Card is Chococo. Liv Morgan, Chococo Exeter Store Manager said:
“Chococo is a chocolate house offering fresh chocolates and gifts, plus we have our café serving our famous single origin hot chocolate and sweet treats.
“After a tough couple of years, indies are just getting back on their feet and being a part of the Exeter Independent Gift Card helps us to reconnect with customers old and new. It can encourage people through the door and drive awareness- something that all small businesses need. We notice every customer and every pound as a small business, it really does make a massive difference when people shop local.
“When you buy an Exeter Independent Gift Card you know that money is going to be spent with the indies in Exeter.
“The new digital Exeter Independent Gift Card is a huge step forward because it makes it even easier to give as a present. We are seeing more and more people paying with their phones now and being able to put your Exeter Independent Gift Card on your phone, and pay with it, makes it so much easier.”
The Exeter Independent Gift Card was first launched in 2018 and can be spent with over one hundred independent businesses in the city.
Another business welcoming the new digital Exeter Independent Gift Card is independent pizza restaurant The Flat, co-owner Chloe Whipple said:
“People get a whole experience of Exeter through one gift card. The Flat has been open for five years now, offering vegetarian pizza with vegan and gluten free options too, all in a welcoming space that is like an extension of home.
“We get a high volume of people using their Exeter Independent Gift Card. Being a part of the gift card is great exposure and encourages people through the door to try us, and then they are likely to become regular customers. The Exeter Independent Gift Card reaches a new audience.
“The digital version of the Exeter Independent Gift Card is such a good idea. People can upload their gift card to their digital wallet and not have to worry about remembering to take a gift card with them. They can be more spontaneous. I also love the potential of the digital Exeter Independent Gift Card for last minute gifts. Exeter would be a very different place without our indies, and we need to support them as much as we can and the Exeter Independent Gift Card makes it easy to do that.”
InExeter is the Business Improvement District (BID) behind the initiative. Mattie Richardson, Project Manager at InExeter said the new investment in the gift card will make it easier to support indie businesses:
“Our gift card has been successful for our city with over £47,000 in sales of the gift card. When you consider that people typically spent 65% more when they redeem their gift card, the impact is considerably higher.
“The introduction of our digital Exeter Independent Gift Card will build on this success, making the gift card more accessible for customers, and businesses. The digital gift card can be accepted by all businesses, meaning we can bring even more shops, restaurants, attractions, accommodations and service providers on board. Our goal now is 150 businesses. It is a real positive for our city, shopping local is as important as ever and the difference it makes is extraordinary.
“Exeter Independent Gift Cards are used as presents and as rewards for staff. Some of the most popular places to spend an Exeter Independent Gift Card include food and drink places, pubs, and shops. We have a large student population in Exeter and the gift card is very popular with younger people too. From getting a haircut to stocking up at our zero waste shops or picking up a special treat there is something for everyone.
“When you shop, eat or experience local, you are supporting a real person in a real shop who in turn supports the community. Our indies are the lifeblood of the city, we are brand Exeter. For these reasons, now is the time for continued investment in the Exeter Independent Gift Card and making it easier than ever to support our local independent businesses.”
The Exeter Independent Gift Card is part of the award-winning Town & City Gift Card concept from Miconex with over seventy programmes across the UK and Ireland, including Bath, Bournemouth and Cheltenham.
Colin Munro is the managing director of Miconex said Exeter’s new digital gift card is positioning the town for the future:
“Digital gift cards are growing in popularity with two thirds of people looking to make gift cards more usable and storable within mobile wallets. As a society, we are increasingly moving towards mobile payments, and with its new digital gift card, Exeter is primed for the future.”