We live in an age where speed and convenience are critically important.

As a result, digital gift cards and prepaid cards are becoming essential tools for companies aiming to incentivize and engage effectively.

These digital solutions streamline the process of sending rewards and payouts, offering immediate value to recipients while providing businesses with invaluable data on how they’re being used and their ROI.

Giftbit is at the forefront of integrating new payment technologies into everyday business operations, helping businesses adapt to and benefit from these digital tools. We sat down with Giftbit CEO Leif Baradoy to discuss the current landscape and what the future holds for this technology.

Leif has been deeply involved in tech and strategic planning for over two decades, and he brings a pragmatic perspective to the digital transactions field. His focus is on how digital gift cards can simplify and enhance transactions, and he sees significant potential in using technology to streamline the delivery of digital rewards globally.

What’s the main challenge that Giftbit helps companies overcome?

"The ultimate problem that we’re trying to solve for our clients is instant mass payouts and rewards. Businesses have so many people in their network and communities that they want to incentivize and reward. And they want to do that in a way that is respectful and fast. Giftbit makes this process very easy for the business, but also easy and enjoyable for their recipient." 

Why do businesses send rewards and payouts?

"The motivation behind rewards and payouts is in part financial, but it’s also about trying to move beyond a transactional relationship with your wider business network. Rewards are about creating a relationship where there’s a sense of gratitude and thankfulness and respect, and I don’t think that’s going to change. 

In business, we’re all increasingly networked, and we’re global first. So this problem of wanting to build relationships through rewards is not going to go away. But it will change. 

From my perspective, with the rise of things like cryptocurrency and digital wallets becoming more common on our phones, and with our identity starting to define our browsing experience online, how we send those sorts of payouts are going to change. And Giftbit’s here to go on that journey with our customers." 

What is the future of digital gift cards?

"Frictionless payouts are the future. Speed and ease will only increase. For rewards, payouts, and gift cards, I expect it to become easier for businesses to push value directly to recipients.

Specifically, businesses will be able to issue a payout directly to someone’s digital wallet — whether that wallet is powered by Apple, Google, or one of open-protocols that we’re seeing emerge from good work happening in the crypto space. The tech will, of course, become invisible as it is perfected, so the experience we’ll have of the future will simply be one of ease and convenience — meeting people where they’re at. 

We’re currently watching how missing but important parts of internet infrastructure are being built out, namely web-native identity and payments. 

So whether it looks like a crypto wallet or whether it’s a wallet attached to your Apple ID or your Google ID, I think the future for payouts is that businesses will more easily know the identity of the people they’re interacting with and will therefore be able to issue payouts, rewards, and gift cards more directly and faster. That’ll be more convenient and secure for everyone. 

We’ve already seen this shift at Giftbit. Emails used to be the primary way that our customers would communicate with external parties, including their staff. But there's been an explosion of mechanisms by which we can communicate with one another — custom applications, all sorts of messaging services like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, even text messages. People now want to be communicated with where they are, not necessarily through a standardized tool like email.

So I think there's going to be fewer intermediary steps as part of the future of digital gift cards, and we'll be harnessing these developing open protocols around payment and identity that are still in the early build stages."

Giftbit Links: a simple way to send rewards

How do international payments fit in?

"More businesses are global faster, especially with the rise of remote work. It's easier to do business globally, even for small companies. Globalization used to impact large companies first. But now, anyone can spin up a Shopify store and start shipping internationally to customers all over the world.

We've seen a growing need for international rewards, incentives, and payouts. Businesses are more able to operate across borders today, and they need rewards and incentives that are as global and flexible as other business operations. 

But ultimately, global is important because we’re all global faster."

HR Tech Summit banner (5)

How important will transparency be in the reward and payout industry?

"A really great part of Giftbit’s story is that in our early days, we helped to promote and standardize the idea of transparency in rewards and sharing the value of unclaimed rewards back to our customers. It was important for us to bring that transparency into the industry. 

Information wants to be free. Increasingly we live in a world of transparency. If we're trying to hide and obfuscate information from our customers, it's just a losing battle."

Why is Giftbit so transparent?

"It comes out of our values. People want to know if they’re being treated fairly, and the unknown is such a noisy thing. 

Coming out of a startup culture and a still young company, I'm coming with a perspective of knowing that people talk about their businesses online, they talk about the nature of how revenue is made, and they expect things to be transparent. Our customers want to know we're making money so that we're going be around with them, but people are also naturally curious around how the gift card industry makes money."

How else is Giftbit preparing for the future? 

"We have a clear roadmap for how we’re adapting to the changing marketplace, and we’re adopting AI early and often to help us get there. Giftbit is going to continue being the easiest option on the market for customers that want to launch and run reward and payout programs. And we’re going to continue to be the most transparent reward provider. 

Our team is principled and growth-oriented, and we have a culture we’re proud of. Our cultural principles will always guide everything we do."

Giftbit makes every aspect of reward and payout programs easy. Watch a quick demo now.