Sorry for interrupting, this website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Learn more
Accept & Close

Gifts and Greeting Cards - UK - May 2015

"Despite competition from digital communications and social media, sales of greetings cards are holding up well. Sales of single cards (not including boxed) grew from £1,428 million in 2013 to £1,456 million in 2014, up 2%."

- Jane Westgarth, Senior Retail Analyst

This report covers the following areas:

  • Will the digital generation learn to love cards?
  • Will changing grocery shopping habits mean lower card sales for supermarkets? 
  • What is the impact of the personalised online sector? 

The most important segment of the market is birthday cards and retailers have the advantage that these are not seasonal and sell all the year through. Spring season cards represent extra sales opportunities, especially for Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day, but retailers face the difficulty of wastage. Sales of Christmas cards are dominated by boxed cards which have fared poorly. Although the cost per card is cheap, postage prices have risen sharply, putting people off sending large volumes of cards through the post so this segment of the market has seen falling sales.

Print-on-demand services, particularly Moonpig and Funky Pigeon, have grown but remain relatively small within the market as a whole. Alternative ways of sending a greeting, through social media or text message, are a competitive threat for the conventional card industry and could forge long-term changes to people’s attitudes towards giving or sending paper greetings cards.

T
he report covers the UK market for greetings cards and gifts. The greetings card market is defined as including cards for Christmas, birthdays, spring season occasions (ie Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, Father's Day and Easter) and other everyday occasions (anniversaries, good luck, get well and blank cards etc). It includes cards sent online as well as paper greetings cards.

Gifts are more difficult to define and include anything that people buy to give to someone else. This can mean that a gift is anything from a trinket or novelty from under £5 through to an iPad or even a holiday. The report looks at attitudes towards purchasing gifts and trends in spending, rather than trying to accurately estimate the scale of the gift market. We include tokens and gift cards as well as specialist gift experiences.

What you get

What's included

Why buy from us?

Succeed

Our reports will provide you with market data, consumer research and competitive intelligence to succeed in your market.

Instant Access

Buy now and you'll have instant access to the information you need to make the right decisions.

Opportunities

Find out what's next in the markets that matter to you: where opportunities lie and what challenges you will face.

Trusted

A business Superbrand, Mintel is a source you can trust. We have been defining and refining the Market Intelligence mix since 1972.

Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Products covered in this report
      • Executive Summary

        • Despite digital alternatives, a high percentage of people buy cards
          • Figure 1: Consumer spending on single greetings cards, 2009-19
        • Emphasising the emotional engagement of cards
          • Intensely competitive retail scene
            • Figure 2: Share of UK retail value sales of singles greetings cards, by outlet type, 2014 (est)
          • Differentiation is important
            • People want gifts to be relevant
              • Figure 3: Important factors when choosing a gift for someone, March 2015
            • Buying cards dominated by birthdays and Christmas
              • Figure 4: Purchases of greetings cards, by occasion, March 2015
            • Almost half bought from the Card Factory
              • Figure 5: Retailers where purchased greetings cards, March 2015
            • Factors influencing choice of retailers
              • Figure 6: Factors influencing choice of retailer for greetings cards, March 2015
            • Habits are being reshaped
              • Figure 7: Changing greetings habits, March 2015
          • Issues and Insights

            • Will the digital generation learn to love cards?
              • The facts
                • The implications
                  • Will changing grocery shopping habits mean lower card sales for supermarkets?
                    • The facts
                      • The implications
                        • What is the impact of the personalised online sector?
                          • The facts
                            • The implications
                            • The Market – What You Need to Know

                              • Robust market performance
                                • More budget cards available
                                  • WH Smith eyes the budget sector
                                    • Print-on-demand reaching 5% by value
                                      • Everyday cards take two thirds of the market
                                        • High postage costs dampen demand at Christmas
                                          • Gift cards more popular than paper vouchers
                                            • More than eight in 10 buy gifts at Christmas
                                            • Market Size and Forecast

                                                • Figure 8: UK retail value sales of single greetings cards, at current and constant 2014 prices, 2009-19
                                                • Figure 9: Consumer spending on single greetings cards, 2009-19
                                                • Figure 10: UK retail value sales of gift vouchers to consumers, at current prices, 2010-14
                                              • Spending on gifts
                                              • Segment Performance

                                                  • Figure 11: UK retail value sales of greetings cards, by segment, 2013 and 2014
                                                  • Figure 12: UK retail value sales of greetings cards, Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day, 2013 and 2014
                                              • Key Players – What You Need To Know

                                                • Growth for Card Factory and the supermarkets
                                                  • Specialists capture high market share
                                                    • Two major card publishers dominate the market
                                                      • Print-on-demand retailers are the biggest advertisers
                                                        • WH Smith goes head to head with Card Factory
                                                          • Hallmark goes online with Amazon
                                                            • Ways of creating wish lists
                                                            • Channels to Market

                                                              • Broad availability
                                                                • Impressive growth by Card Factory
                                                                  • WH Smith tests Cardmarket
                                                                    • Clintons being turned around
                                                                      • Convenient supermarket shopping
                                                                        • Few other card chains
                                                                          • What’s happening to online cards?
                                                                            • Figure 13: Share of UK retail value sales of single greetings cards, by outlet type, 2009-14
                                                                        • Market Drivers

                                                                          • Population will grow by 3.8% from 2014-19
                                                                            • Figure 14: Trends in the age structure of the UK population, 2009-19
                                                                          • Plenty of reasons to give cards
                                                                            • Figure 15: Births, marriages and deaths, UK, 2009-13
                                                                          • Rising postage costs turn people off at Christmas
                                                                            • Figure 16: Price of first and second class letter post, 2009-15
                                                                          • Convenient access to the internet
                                                                            • Figure 17: Ownership of personal technology products, November 2014
                                                                        • Market Share

                                                                            • Figure 18: Brand shares of greetings cards, UK, 2010-14
                                                                        • Brand Communication and Promotion

                                                                          • Little investment in advertising by greetings card retailers
                                                                            • Figure 19: Main media advertising spend, 2011-14
                                                                          • Advertising strategies
                                                                          • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                            • WH Smith trials budget card shop
                                                                              • Keeping up with the pure-plays
                                                                                • Apps to help with gift lists
                                                                                  • Figure 20: Argos’ Christmas list app
                                                                                • Encouraging gifting
                                                                                  • Virtual greetings
                                                                                    • Saying thanks
                                                                                      • Purchasing unwanted gift cards
                                                                                      • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                        • Getting the right gift
                                                                                          • Robust demand for greetings cards
                                                                                            • Where they shop
                                                                                              • Changing habits
                                                                                              • Important Factors When Choosing a Gift

                                                                                                  • Figure 21: Important factors when choosing a gift for someone, March 2015
                                                                                              • Purchases of Greetings Cards by Occasion

                                                                                                  • Figure 22: Purchases of greetings cards, by occasion, March 2015
                                                                                                • The consumer – 2006, 2010, 2013
                                                                                                  • Figure 23: Bought cards in the last 12 months, by occasion, 2006-13
                                                                                                  • Figure 24: Purchases of greetings cards, birthdays and Christmas, by age, March 2015
                                                                                              • Where They Purchased Greetings Cards

                                                                                                  • Figure 25: Retailers where purchased greetings cards, March 2015
                                                                                              • Factors Influencing Choice of Retailer

                                                                                                  • Figure 26: Factors influencing choice of retailer for greetings cards, March 2015
                                                                                                • Differentiating Clintons and Card Factory
                                                                                                  • Figure 27: Factors influencing choice of retailer for greetings cards, Clintons and Card Factory, March 2015
                                                                                              • Changes in Greetings Habits

                                                                                                    • Figure 28: Changing greetings habits, March 2015
                                                                                                • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                                                  • Data sources
                                                                                                    • Market sizing and segment performance
                                                                                                      • Fan chart forecast
                                                                                                        • Abbreviations

                                                                                                        Companies Covered

                                                                                                        To learn more about the companies covered in this report please contact us.

                                                                                                        Gifts and Greeting Cards - UK - May 2015

                                                                                                        £1,995.00 (Excl.Tax)