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EXCLUSIVE: What Does Klarna’s Latest Partnership With SmartGift Mean For Shoppers?

EXCLUSIVE: What Does Klarna’s Latest Partnership With SmartGift Mean For Shoppers? | Fintech Finance

As we enter the run up to Christmas and the holiday season, consumers will no doubt start purchasing more gifts for friends and family. Perhaps with this in mind, Klarna will offer its merchant partners the ability to buy and instantly send gifts and pay for them in four interest-free payments as part of their new partnership with SmartGift, a leading gift-based e-commerce and data platform. Not only will this fill consumers with the confidence that they are making the right purchase for their loved ones, but the partnership is also significant in reducing costs, wastage and developing a loyal consumer base by cultivating meaningful customer experiences.

So why SmartGift? Why is this partnership beneficial? – It’s very clear that SmartGift, through its patented ‘Send as a Gift’ technology, is one of the leading innovators in transforming the traditional gift-giving experience into an inclusive, modern manner. SmartGift actually allows recipients to select their own preferences, such as size, colours or shades, which is actually hugely beneficial for the market. Not only does it leave both gift senders and receivers feeling included, it crucially makes them satisfied with their purchase, especially given that wallet load and mental stress of Q4 holiday shopping is intense, as well as the fact that more than 14% of all holiday merchandise is returned due to gift preferences being wrong. With the collaboration in place, Monika Kochhar, CEO at SmartGift, voices that ‘People either buy for themselves or for others’, and so ‘this partnership will enable both shopping journeys seamlessly and with ease.’ With gifts delivered digitally through text, email, or any other messaging platform, the partnership will enable Klarna’s merchants to set up safe, online gift shopping.

Convenience – Another exciting feature that the partnership facilitates is that of convenience. Recipients have the ability to exchange a product before it even ships, ensuring that the correct choice is made and reducing the issue of returning gifts already highlighted. Furthermore, SmartGift is able to fulfil a conversion in less than 30 minutes, instead of a typical three-to-six month period with gift cards. This simple path allows for more potential customers to be turned in dedicated shoppers with minimal delay. This fits into the broader challenge of furthering customer acquisition and brand loyalty as part of gift giving and e-commerce. There is definitely room to develop true presence in this field, as Kochhar once again comments that ‘Gift moments like ‘just because’, ‘thank you’ and other evergreen gifting occasions have seen an increase of over 500%, opening up a new channel for product discovery. With positive consumer sentiment leading into the upcoming end-of-year holidays, this partnership sets up a major win-win.’

Environmentally friendly – The project also reduces wastage. As mentioned before, recipients have the ability to select their preferences. What that means is less unnecessary features that are falsely perceived as added value. To be honest, added value is only value perceived in the eyes of the purchaser, not the receiver. Now, there is a drastic change to this flawed perception of gift giving, resulting in a more personal, preferential end result and reduced environmental wastage associated with the extra packaging material and overheads they carry. Gifts are now more sustainable, intimate and environmentally sound, at scale.

This partnership with SmartGift follows on from some extremely interesting research and developments that have happened involving Klarna this current month. Klarna have voiced their concerns that retailers and shoppers are out of sync with each other. The majority of retailers (75%) consider themselves to be fairly or very sophisticated when it comes to omnichannel shopping, yet half (50%) of Klarna users believe retailers are not joined up enough between their online and in-store operations. The partnership with SmartGift definitely coincides with this observation. This partnership is also interesting, as it follows on from Klarna’s recent partnership with FreedomPay. FreedomPay’s US merchants can offer Klarna’s flexible, interest-free payment solutions at checkout in-store, maximising sales and bringing added ease and convenience to shoppers across America ahead of the most anticipated shopping season yet.

Head of Business Development and Partnerships at Klarna, Matthew Suraci, said that working with SmartGift will ‘offer even more opportunities for our merchants to enable a superior and flexible shopping experience for their customers at a time when digital gifting is more important than ever.’ Klarna, already a huge name with over 250,000 retail partners and a valuation of approximately $45.6 billion, are definitely making moves to get even bigger, bolder and better by allowing consumers to give the perfect gift, conveniently ahead of the holiday season.

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