What is an Incentive Gift?

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  • Written By: Laura M. Sands
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 06 September 2019
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An incentive gift is a bonus item offered for the primary purpose of stimulating a certain action, such as a single customer purchase or an increase in employee production. Incentive marketing campaigns often involve the giving away of promotional items that cannot be purchased separately and, therefore, create a sense of urgency to participate in the promotion in order to gain the item. An incentive gift may also be offered to outstanding employees as a type of service award.

Advertisements promoting retail sales frequently offer an incentive gift if purchases at an establishment exceed a certain dollar amount. For instance, a department store may advertise that, during a particular sale period, customers who purchase $100 US Dollars (USD) or more in merchandise will be given a special bonus item free of charge. It is also not unusual for the bonus item to be unavailable for a regular purchase.

Corporate incentive gifts are sometimes offered as a way of attracting new customers or encouraging higher sales volumes. Bonus gifts are not necessarily expensive or valuable items, although they may be, but an incentive gift may simply be a novelty item expressing a company’s appreciation of a customer’s business. Some bonus gifts are also exclusively designed for a promotion, which not only increases the item’s value, but may also increase consumer interest in the sales campaign.


Some third-party vendors specialize in creating incentive gift items for businesses of various sizes. Such vendors frequently advertise to business owners online and through printed catalogs that highlight gift selections that a company can purchase to give to employees or customers. Often, a bonus gift will be engraved with a company’s logo, slogan or contact information as a way of advertising the company’s business.

Companies also frequently encourage greater employee production with incentive gifts offered as an award. Examples of employee incentive awards include restaurant gift certificates, weekend excursions or larger gifts, such as a car or an exotic vacation. While any type of business may offer incentive gifts to motivate employees, bonus awards like these are commonly offered through commission sales jobs.

An incentive gift may also be used to reward sales teams or special departments when a competition is waged to increase production. When offered to groups of individuals, gifts that can be shared, such as a catered lunch, are often preferred. In many instances, however, each team member may be awarded an individual gift for participation. Whether advertised to employees or customers, an incentive gift is normally offered as a way to increase a company’s sales.


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Post 4

A lot of business owners would agree that the most valuable asset of a company is its personnel. On that regard, most businesses try to find ways to motivate their workforce. Whether they are fountain pens, rollers, or ball-point pens, they become unique gift ideas with the name engravings.

Post 2

@chrisinbama- I think it is great that your company offers such a nice incentive. I work as a salesman at a car lot and we occasionally get a really good incentive. A couple of months ago, if we sold a total of 10 cars during that month, we got a certificate for a weekend vacation. Needless to say, we sold a lot of cars that month!

Post 1

I work for an insurance company that offers a great incentive program. We make phone calls and try to get as many new customers for our agents every month. For every 25 new referrals we obtain, we get a $20 gift card.

If we are able to get our current customers to add to or upgrade their current policy, we get the same incentive. It's a great way to motivate us to go above and beyond at work.

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