Gift Card usage in Magento and Implications from Order Management Point of View
Everyone is using gift cards these days and the expectation is that everything is figured out and should be seamless. This might be true from the customer’s perspective but there are lot more things that make it a liiiiittttle bit more complicated from the merchant’s point of view.
Magento Enterprise has a built-in support for gift cards and as far as customer is concerned they will buy the cards with the denominations they are presented and then they can use it toward purchases. This is how it works in Magento with just a few little exceptions that might trigger an avalanche of business process events to deal with. Let me give you an example:
- Customer bought a gift card and now wants to use it toward their purchase.
- The total amount of the gift card doesn’t cover the full amount of the order, so that means that customer would still need to use either another gift card or purchase using their credit card
- Customer finishes the order with her/his credit card and now impatiently waiting for the order to be processed and the goods to arrive at their house
- Finally the order is processed and very well awaited product arrives at customer’s door he/she quickly discovers that one of the products is damaged
- Well, customer calls back to the merchant and wants to return their item
Problem? You bet! How does the retailer return the money to the customer when part of the order was paid by gift card and part with credit card?
Magento had to deal with this problem and out of the box process is geared toward Credit Memo solution which will issue you a Store Credit for the order that was paid with Gift Card but in case where it was a mixed order it will be up-to company like Lyonscg to help merchant to figure out and define the process so that it will work up to the standards of their business processes.
A lot of ERPs or Order Management Systems can’t deal with stored credit, which creates liability to the merchant and makes it harder to track money from accounting perspective. It also means that there is no silver bullet to this inherited challenge and each and every gift card usage process would need to be evaluated and correctly architected.