Forget looking under the tree Christmas morning. Grab the smartphone and check the inbox for an e-gift card. Walmart this week promoted an offering of 19 customizable e-gift cards as a gift-giving solution that is sure to have appeal to those who wait until Santa is halfway down the chimney. The entire transaction is handled online, from the ordering of the card, to delivery in the recipient’s inbox through redemption, which is only valid for online purchases.
At first blush, an e-gift card may seem like the ultimate thoughtless and impersonal gift, but let’s not judge. There are undoubtedly circumstances where the e-gift card makes sense and by calling attention to its capabilities Walmart is positioned to absorb any unspent dollars floating around the marketplace from people who might otherwise have not bought a gift. There likely are a meaningful number of perennial procrastinators for whom the e-gift card makes sense.