Leveraging Gift Cards as Incentives Towards a more Sustainable Future

By Todd Tomlin, Chief Operating Officer at Ncentiva

Over one billion iPhones were in active use worldwide at the close of 2020, with roughly the same number of iPhones sold from 2016 through 2020. During that same period, 250 million iPads have been sold, 120 million Apple watches and 100 million MacBook’s. All told, there are almost 1.5 billion active portable Apple devices globally.* This doesn’t scratch the surface of the total amount of electronics in use considering other brands such as Samsung, Sony, Toshiba, Huawei, Google, Amazon and many more.

What happens to electronic devices when they are no longer needed by the consumer? To answer this question, perhaps look at your own behavior. You may toss it in a drawer, give it to a friend or relative or potentially throw it away (which back in 2018, over 400,000 were thrown away every day)**. Many mobile phone service providers allow you to trade-in your old phone toward the purchase of a new one, but what about your other devices, and are you really receiving fair market value for your phone?

While companies like ecoatm, Gazelle and Apple provide cash or credit towards more electronics purchases, Ncentiva leverages branded gift cards as the payout for consumers to trade in unneeded devices for gift cards they want. Partnering with various global digital gift card suppliers, Ncentiva is often able to pay consumers a value above what they would have received in cash for their electronic device.

“Having worked in the gift card industry for 12 years, I’ve seen first-hand how branded gift cards can influence the behavior of consumers,” says Todd Tomlin, Chief Operating Officer of Ncentiva. “From completing online surveys, to signing up for new bank accounts, consumers act when a gift card of their choice is offered, and that’s why we utilize gift cards at Ncentiva as our payout incentive.”

The need for companies in the circular economy to focus on the repair, refurbishment or recycling of devices is ever increasing. With companies like Ncentiva, the gift card industry can count electronics device trade ins as one more way it is helping to build a more sustainable future.

*Source: David Curry. “Apple Statistics (2021)”. Business of Apps, October 29, 2021, https://www.businessofapps.com/data/apple-statistics/. Accessed December 23, 2021.

**Source: Nathan Proctor. “Americans Toss 151 Million Phones A Year. What If We Could Repair Them Instead?”. wbur, December 11, 2018, https://www.wbur.org/cognoscenti/2018/12/11/right-to-repair-nathan-proctor. Accessed December 23, 2021.


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