Gift cards are one of the most popular presents in all of America. Chances are that in the past year, you’ve given or received dozens of gift cards. There’s a reason for that – gift cards are flexible, easy to give and receive, and almost always useful to the recipient.
However, sometimes you end up with a gift card you really don’t need. Maybe it’s to a store you stopped going to, or a restaurant that you really don’t like. The gift was certainly well-intentioned – it’s the thought that counts, after all! – but after looking at that gift card sitting in your junk drawer for the past year, you’re thinking about getting rid of it.
Lucky for you, it’s easier than it has ever been to exchange unwanted gift cards for cash – and it can be done from the comfort of your own home! Gift card buying and exchanging services like EJ Gift Cards are fantastic choices if you’re looking to sell gift cards for cash, and make use of the balances on your unused gift cards.
But if you’re looking to sell your gift card, you should take a moment to ask yourself some basic questions, to ensure that it’s the right choice for your situation. Take a look at this list of 6 things to ask yourself before selling your gift card – and make sure you make the right decision!
1. Why Haven’t I Used The Gift Card Yet?
This is actually a pretty good question to ask yourself – because when you think it through, the answer may surprise you. When you sell a gift card, you want to make sure that there’s a good reason you weren’t able to use up the balance in the first place. There are 3 common reasons that most people sell gift cards:
- Wrong establishment – We’ve all been there. Despite the best intentions of friends, family, and loved ones, it’s not hard to end up with a gift card to a place you don’t visit regularly.
Maybe your uncle who loves fishing gave you a gift card to Bass Pro Shops – and while you appreciate the gesture, you’re not exactly outdoorsy, and you’d rather save up for a flat-screen TV from Best Buy. Or maybe you’ve been given a gift card to a restaurant you don’t typically patronize, or to a place that serves food you don’t like.
Whatever the situation may be, you probably won’t use the card anytime soon, so it’s probably a good idea to sell your gift card.
- Inconvenience – Not everyone has easy access to “common” stores. If you’ve ended up with a gift card to Target, for example, but you live in an area with only WalMart stores, you may not want to drive for an hour just to use up the balance of your gift card. In this situation, selling a gift card is often a good idea, as it can save you quite a bit of time and money.
However, you may want to see if you can use the card online first. Many larger stores now offer products that can be shipped directly to customers – so if inconvenience is the only thing that’s stopping you from using the balance of your card, it may be worth checking the merchant website, and seeing if you can order items online.
- Would rather have cash – You can’t spend a Best Buy gift card on groceries, and you can’t use a Target gift card to pay for college textbooks. Sometimes, you just need cash, and nothing else will do. In this case, selling your gift card is certainly the best choice. Regardless of your reasoning, take the time to determine whether you’re better off selling your gift card for cash – this way, you won’t experience any kind of “seller’s remorse”, and you can be sure that you’ve made the right choice.
2. Could I Do Anything Else With The Card?
While you can always sell gift cards online, you also have other choices when it comes to using up an unwanted gift card – and it’s often a good idea to consider these choices before selling your gift card.
Re-gifting can be a popular choice for unwanted gift cards. Gift cards are valid no matter who redeems them, so there’s nothing to stop you from simply re-gifting an unwanted, unused gift card. However, be careful about who you give it to – you probably don’t want the person who gave you the card to know about your re-gift.
You can also give unwanted or low-balance gift cards to charity – this is especially popular during tax season, as some gift cards that are donated to non-profits can be written off on tax returns.
So if you’re unsure about whether or not you want to sell gift cards online, you can consider these two options first. You can still put the value of your gift card to good use, though you won’t get any cash for your trouble.
3. How Much Money Can I Get For My Card?
This can be a very important consideration indeed. Gift card buyers and marketplaces exist to make money – and that means that you’ll never get the full balance for your gift card.
Though the specifics differ for each individual site, the business model of most gift card buyers is similar – they purchase the value of a gift card from an individual for less than “face value”, and then resell the value of these gift cards to consumers who are looking for discounts on gift cards.
If you’re curious about how much money you’ll get for your card, here are a couple questions that can affect the purchase price when you sell gift cards online.
- Value of card – When you sell gift cards that have a high balance, you’ll likely to get a better percentage of the gift card’s value. This is because higher-value gift cards are often easier to sell to customers who don’t want to purchase individual, low-balance gift cards.
However, this is only true to a point, because some gift cards with values of $500 or more can be hard to sell on the gift card aftermarket.
- Popularity of store – A gift card to a store like Target, WalMart, or Amazon will almost always sell for more than a gift card to a smaller, independent store or a restaurant. The reason? Supply and demand!
Just about anyone can make use of a Target gift card, and can purchase a huge variety of products – whereas a gift card to Chipotle can only be used at Chipotle locations in exchange for food. Because the Target gift card is more versatile, it’s more valuable!
- Speed of sale – If you choose to sell your gift cards on an online gift card marketplace where you can sell directly to other consumers, you might want to discount your gift card in order to sell it more quickly. Conversely, you could ask for a higher percentage of value – but you may have to wait several days to sell the gift card.
These are the primary factors affecting price when you sell gift cards. Though the values offered for each gift card by each company will be different, they’re usually based on some combination of these factors.
4. Will I Have To Wait For A Check In The Mail?
If you’re looking to sell your gift cards, you probably want to get paid quickly – otherwise you wouldn’t even bother selling the gift cards in the first place! This means that method of payment should be a major consideration when you’re selling your cards.
Not every online gift card buyer is built alike. Some gift card buyers and marketplaces still issue paper checks – which means that you may be waiting for payment for days, or even weeks. While this is certainly a legitimate way to get paid, waiting that long can be a real inconvenience.
Wire transfers are also sometimes used when selling gift cards online. While a direct wire transfer is much faster than waiting for a paper check in the mail, it can be a bit risky – you’ll likely have to share bank account and routing information with the buyer of your gift card.
PayPal is probably your best choice if you’re looking to sell gift cards online and get paid quickly and securely. PayPal doesn’t require the sharing of personal information, and offers fast, intuitive payment for your gift cards.
Try to make sure you choose a gift card buyer that pays through wire transfers or PayPal – this will make it much easier for you to get paid quickly when you sell gift cards online.
5. Do I Care If The Giver Finds Out?
Before you choose to sell your gift card, you should ask yourself this question. Do you care if the giver of the card finds out that you sold it?
In most questions, the answer will be “no”. It’s pretty rare for someone to directly ask you what you purchased with a gift card – they just want to know that you received and appreciated their gift.
However, if you are asked directly, be honest. Just tell the person who gave you the card that you couldn’t find anything you wanted at that particular store, and that you decided to sell it for cash – and used that money to buy something that you actually did want.
The thought is what counts, so as long as you express your appreciation, the giver won’t be offended.
And you don’t have to tell anyone that you sold the card, either – unless the gift card giver kept the PIN and card number for the gift card, there’s no way for them to tell that it hasn’t been used, or that you’ve transferred the balance to someone else.
6. How Can I Choose The Right Place To Sell Gift Cards?
Here’s where things can get a little confusing when selling gift cards online. There are a lot of different places you can sell your gift cards online – so if you’ve never done it before, you may be a bit confused.
Your two primary choices are direct gift card buyers (such as EJ Gift Cards), and peer-to-peer gift card marketplaces like Cardpool.
Direct gift card buyers are certainly the fastest, easiest way to sell your unwanted gift cards quickly. This is because direct gift card buyers purchase gift cards outright – no bargaining, hassle, or waiting for payments. You enter the information on a card, get an offer, and get paid – it’s that simple.
Peer-to-peer gift card marketplaces can be a good choice if you don’t need cash quickly. These marketplaces allow you to sell gift cards directly to other people – sort of like eBay for gift cards! While these marketplaces sometimes allow you to make a bit more money on your card, you’ll have to wait several days before your card sold, and the marketplace will take a percentage of your sale – so you may not make as much on the gift card as you think.
Regardless of which method you choose, make sure you pick a reputable site. Take a look at online reviews for your chosen gift card buyer, and make sure that they’re communicative, legitimate, and above-board. While gift card scammers are quite rare, you want to minimize your risk.
Need To Sell Gift Cards? EJ Gift Cards Is The Right Choice For You!
If you’re selling your unwanted gift cards online, you’re in the right place. At EJ Gift Cards, we provide top-notch service, an intuitive selling process, and customer support if you have any questions.
Selling a gift card with us is as simple as 1, 2, 3!
- Enter the value of your gift card on our website (we accept hundreds of cards!)
- Get a competitive offer for your gift card
- Accept the offer, enter your information, and get paid via PayPal
It’s just that simple. So don’t wait, don’t delay, and don’t trust other less-reliable gift card buyers with the value of your gift cards. Sell your gift cards with EJ Gift Cards now!