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There has been a growing interest in personalised gifts in Australia throughout the past few years, with a steady increase over the last two years in particular.
According to Australia Post's 2021 eCommerce Industry Report, around 9 million Aussie households shopped online throughout 2020, with a whopping 1.38 million households making their online shopping debut.
The most frequented online stores were noted as being variety stores, some of which include gift shops, as well as novelty and special interest stores.
As the global pandemic has kept families and loved ones from celebrating with one another, many Australians turned to gift-giving as a method of demonstrating their love, thoughts, and affections and innately celebrating from afar.
In lieu of parties and all the memories that accompany them, we're opting instead to give gifts that will become memories themselves, gifts that they will remember receiving.
Of course, this isn't the only appeal of personalised gifting.
Thoughtfulness with unique respect to the recipient
There are gifts that are quite easy to give to people you don't know very well. Chocolates, liquor, pairs of socks, and bottles of perfume or cologne are common generic gifts, or gifts that are universally known to please or at the very least, be of use to their recipient.
In this regard, generic gifts can be perceived as thoughtful, because they are at least functional.
Personalised gift-giving takes thoughtfulness in gifting to the next level, however, by ensuring that your gifting isn't just 'generally thoughtful', but is thoughtful with unique respect to the recipient of that gift.
This method of gifting is also commonly referred to as 'recipient-focused gift-giving' by social scientists. Yes, the science behind gift-giving is surprisingly thorough and offers some fascinating insights into modern relationships.
A recipient-focused gift takes into consideration the hobbies and interests of the gift recipient, with the gift itself ideally being a resource or tool that the recipient can use in their day-to-day life.
Some good examples include monogrammed accessories, engraved jewelry boxes, and personalised office stationery, though the list is exhaustive and any commentary on what gifts are 'best' are naturally highly subjective.
Functionality over flashiness
According to American social psychologist Andy Luttrell, gift-givers have a tendency to 'get caught up in the moment of giving a gift', which can often lead to us splurging unnecessarily, and mistaking the price tag of an object with its true value to its potential recipient.
Going for flashiness when it comes to gift shopping is an incredibly common pitfall for many gift shoppers across the globe, and it's largely caused by our desire to provide our recipient with an amazing gift 'in the moment' of initial reception, as this is the moment we spend our shopping trip daydreaming about.
The irony here is that in the long-term, gifts that are more functional and less flashy are likely to stand the test of time and thus, hold a greater emotional impact on our recipients.
Personalised gifts essentially mix the best elements of both flashy and functional gifts together, as personalised gifts tend to be highly functional items made flashy by the addition of an engraved message, monogrammed initials, or some order alteration that's unique to the intended recipient.
Finally, as the gift giving industry is around a $20 billion industry, with a great chunk of that revenue being attributed to Christmas gift shopping, more and more young Australians are adopting sustainable gift-giving practices.
Millennials are increasingly less likely to gift material items unless they know that their gift will actually be utilised and appreciated by its recipient.
Giving personalised gifts will ensure that their recipient will absolutely be able to make use of their gift, as well as treasure their gift for years to come.
In this regard, personalised gifting is front and centre amongst those seeking to gift sustainably.
There's really no correct way to go about recipient-focused gifting. The only way is to really engage with the person receiving the gift. By doing so, you'll demonstrate that you know them, you care for them, and your personalised gift will be a lasting memory of that care.