Remember your days in elementary school where you had to bring in enough Valentine’s Day cards for all of your classmates? You probably never even thought of the expenses associated with this endeavor, that is until you went to buy just one card for the special someone in your life and your total came out to almost five bucks just for a stylish piece of colorful, folding paper. In fact, the National Retail Federation reports that consumers plan to spend around $130.97 just for this once a year tradition on everything from candy, cards and gifts. And no, that doesn’t even include a special dinner for two.
But technology is now here to save the day and a recent study shows that one in three Americans are now sending e-Cards as opposed to heading to their nearest store to plunk down the money required for a card in the physical form.
Released by SOASTA Inc, a provider of both cloud and mobile testing solution, the company decided to begin its research after working closely with Hallmark, possibly the most well known greeting card maker in the world. With participants ranging from 18 years and older, nearly 38 percent shared they will be using e-Cards to let the loves of their lives feel their undying compassion if only for 24-hours.
An interesting fact to note here is that men turning to this easy option outweighed women significantly in the study, with nearly 47 percent of men ages 35 to 44 having plans to easily send an e-Card on the upcoming day of love. While this age group typically must balance home life alongside their careers, they surely never forget the saying “A happy wife equals a happy life,” no matter what is happening during their work days.
“Our research shows that over one in three Americans plan on sending an e-Card for Valentine’s Day, with the morning being the most popular time to do so,” said Tom Lounibos, SOASTA CEO, in a statement. “Whether it’s Valentine’s Day or Christmas, companies trust SOASTA to make sure their web and mobile sites perform successfully during times of peak demand.”
When closely analyzing why e-Cards are continuing to increase in popularity as the days pass, reasons include that they’re free (53 percent), it’s immediate if you realize last minute you didn’t buy an actual card (43 percent), they contain animations (35 percent), they’re good for the environment (34 percent), they’re interactive (24 percent), you don’t need an address (23 percent), they can be edgier than traditional greeting cards (13 percent), no one has to see you buy them (9 percent) and they can have NSFW (not safe for work) content (6 percent).
“The mantra ‘it’s the thought that counts,’ might be most applicable for holidays like Valentine’s Day, and there’s no question that this year’s budget-conscious gift givers will keep this in mind while out looking for the perfect gift,” BIGinsight Consumer Insights Director, Pam Goodfellow commented. “There will be no shortage of deals in the coming days, so frugal consumers will keep a keen eye out for promotions on chocolates, flowers and even dining.”
If you do happen to decide to take the more technological and cost-effective approach this year to ensure your partner feels the love, you have many websites out there. One is Doozy Cards and just last week it unveiled various new romantic and comical cards that will help the love of your life to truly understand why they make your life worth living.
How about the Flirty Sex-O-Meter, a more naughty Valentine's Day e-Card that may cause all types of excitement or the fully animated watercolor of beautiful Valentine's Day flowers with "Flowers For Valentine's Day." This one kills two bird with one stone- you send your love a card and flowers—for free.
If you don’t like either the electronic or store bought cards you have reviewed, an even better solution is to write a special love letter for that special someone from scratch. Not only will they definitely appreciate the extra effort on your part but it could get you off the hook for adhering to your budget and forgoing those beautiful roses that only last a week.
Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli