Scenario 1: Justine has been invited to the wedding of Karen, an office mate. Karen has been a really great and helpful coworker, so she is looking forward to attending the wedding with most of her office mates. The problem is, Justine is not really close with Karen, so she does not know what to give Karen and her husband on their wedding day.
Scenario 2: John’s longtime friend Sally is inviting him to her daughter’s first birthday. John is single and does not really know what to get a baby. Thank goodness Sally’s invitation came with a gift registry list, so he can just go to the store where Sally registered, pick out a gift, present his coupon, check out, and be on his way to the party.
Both scenarios require getting a gift, but it is easy to see that John gets out of his predicament easily because he has an ally: gift registry. The concept of gift registry started in 1924 when the Marshall Fields Department Store in Chicago created the first bridal registry. Nowadays gift registries have come to include baby showers, birthdays anniversaries and many other celebrations.
Advantages of Gift Registry
What makes registries so popular? People have become so busy with work and catching up with their own lives that it can be a challenge to stop and pick out a gift, even if it’s for a very dear and special friend. With gift registries, shopping for gifts can be a hassle-free experience that also gives the following benefits:
- Allows effective communication between the gift givers and the receivers. When recipients sign up for a gift registry, they are making their choice of gifts available to anyone who wishes to give them gifts. This eliminates the disappointment the recipient feels upon receiving gifts they do not fancy and the embarrassment a giver feels upon knowing that the recipient does not appreciate the gift.
- Prevents duplication of gifts. As is with weddings, many people come up with the same ideas for gifts: towels, cutlery, bed linen, kitchen appliances, etc. Retail stores with well-managed gift registries can help prevent this by removing items from the list as soon as they are purchased.
- Gives an element of surprise. Although recipients know exactly what they are going to receive, they do not know whom they will receive the gifts from. Gift registry best practices require stores practice discretion about who buys which items.
- Brings in more customers. Retail stores that offer gift registry services benefit greatly from the number of people coming in to buy items off the registry list. The longer the registry list, the more customer visits, purchases and opportunities for delivering great customer experiences. All these mean more revenue and profits for retailers.
Although some frown at the concept of the registry because it takes away the fun of scouting for a great gift, more people find the convenience of gift registries a big help which allows them to use their spare time more effectively and efficiently.