Have you ever given a gift card to someone who never used the card? Did you feel as if your money was wasted? Have you ever lost or forgotten about a gift card then felt guilty that the giver wasted money?
One of biggest issues with gift cards is the money that’s wasted when they aren’t used. Gift cards can be lost, forgotten or thrown in the back of a sock drawer with the best intentions to use it later. Your hard-earned cash has been transformed into a useless card that benefits no one except, perhaps, the store’s bottom line.
Leif Baradoy, the founder and CEO of Kiind, launched his business with a radical idea: Let people send gift cards and pay for them only when the gift card is used. Kiind gift cards eliminate the problem of you throwing away your money on gift cards that aren’t ever used. Kiind only charges you when the gift cards are used, not when you send them.
I recently spoke with Baradoy about how Kiind has changed the concept of gift cards. Baradoy explained that this year over $10 billion in pre-paid gift cards will go unused and that Kiind can help to eliminate that waste. “Our logic is retailers get paid when cards get used. We’re really excited about the innovation that we’re bringing. The frustrations people have with prepaid gift cards, that problem is long overdue to be solved. We’re really on the forefront of creating more value and making it less risky to give someone a gift card.”
Kiind lets you choose gift cards from major retailers such as Gap, iTunes, Amazon, Home Depot, Nike and more. You can also use Kiind to send gift cards for some local businesses in certain cities. “We have over 2500 local businesses in some select Canadian cities and in San Francisco and Los Angeles. That includes everything from great restaurants to spas and salons,” said Baradoy.
Kiind can come in handy for those who have a tight budget at the holidays. Instead of paying for gift cards immediately, you can pay later, assuming your recipients don’t rush out and use their cards right away. Baradoy says that Kiind is designed for “generous people who want to show their appreciation but want to be prudent with their spending.”
This video is one of the best I’ve seen explaining how something works, not only for how well it explains Kiind, but for how delightfully entertaining and informative it is. Take a short break and check out this video:
Sending a Kiind Gift Card
Kiind makes it simple to send a gift card. Just head to the Kiind website, create an account, add the recipients’ email address, add your credit card information, choose a gift card, write a message and send it. You won’t be charged for the gift card until it’s used.
Baradoy explained, “Kiind is like an app store. You only need to plug in your credit card once. You can select one or multiple gifts to send, add the email addresses, compose a personal email, and hit send. Until the recipient says, ‘Yes, I’m ready to use the gift card,’ you will not be charged for the gift card purchase. Your credit card is pre-authorized for the amount of the gift to make sure that the card will be funded.”
You can also choose the date and time you want the gift card to be sent and when the card expires. “We allow the giver to set an expiry date on the gift card. So if the recipient hasn’t used the gift card within a certain period of time, that offer expires and the credit card is no longer on the hook for that amount,” said Bardaroy. The default expiry date is six months from the date the card is sent.
Kiind sends you a notice when the gift card is used and a reminder to the recipient if the card hasn’t been used before the expiry date.
Kiind gives you some options when you send your gift card that makes the service handy for individuals and businesses. You can easily add a logo and another image to your message to personalize the experience. You can send multiple gift cards at once if your gift list is long.
Kiind also gives you the option of letting the recipient donate the gift card to charity. “We have a number of different well-reputed charitable partners such as Red, Operation Homefront, The Conservation Fund, and a number of other national organizations where people can put the value of their gift cards. It makes the act of giving so genuine on our platform,” said Baradoy.
Redeeming a Kiind Gift Card
When you send a Kiind gift card, the recipient gets an email notice with your message along with the gift card. The recipient doesn’t need to create an account with Kiind or even own a smartphone. The recipient is notified via email with a note “Powered by Kiind” at the bottom.
If the gift is for an online store, the recipient can click through the email to use the card. If the gift is for a retail store, the recipient can print the card and bring it into the store or show the gift card on their smartphone in the store.
What Else You Need to Know
Kiind operates in the US and Canada and accepts Visa, Mastercard and American Express credit cards.
Kiind charges a small fee for each card. Baradoy explained, “We charge a per gift processing fee that ranges from $0.35 to $1.00, a one-time fee on each gift.We believe our platform provides a great deal of value to our users and we haven’t had anyone blink an eye about our small processing fee when we’re potentially saving them hundreds of thousands of dollars on unused gift cards.”
I tested Kiind by buying Amazon gift cards for several loved ones (shh…don’t tell them!). The process was easy: I created an account, entered my credit card information, added email addresses, selected the gift card and the amount, wrote a note, set the send and expiry dates, and hit the Send button. I was charged only for the service fee, not for the entire amount of the gift cards.
Customer service was speedy too. I tried to used my Discover credit card and received an error message on the Kiind website. I clicked on “Support” in the left menu and a pop up window appeared. I wrote to ask which credit cards were accepted and I received my answer within an hour.
If you’re sending gift cards, check out Kiind, a personalize gift card that lets you pay later.
Do you like the idea of gift cards that let you pay later? Have you ever felt you wasted money on a gift card that wasn’t used? Did you watch that great Kiind video? Let us know in the Comments section below!
Many thanks to Silviu Constantinescu and Sylviane Nuccio for naming me and The Wonder of Tech in their end-of-the-year blog posts. I am honored to be chosen by fellow bloggers and suggest you check out their excellent blogs:
Exceptional Bloggers and their Wonderful Hearts, at Net Market Success, by Silviu Constantinescu
27 Bloggers I’m Thankful For, at SylvianeNuccio.com by Sylviane Nuccio