Industry Trend: Food Gifting Gets Bigger and Gets Personal

Food gifting, for any occasion, is one of the few areas that has increased despite the down economy the last few years. Edible gift sales rose nearly 10 percent in the United States from 2007 to 2009, according to the report “Food Gifting in the United States, Second Edition,” and experts say those numbers continue to grow.

This rise is marked by both an increased demand for specialty foods, like truffles, gourmet marshmallowsor artisan granola, and the accessibility of customized treats like cookies and cakes made-to-order. Furthermore, there’s a growing trend for fun, creative and individually portioned treats like cake pops and other bite-size desserts on a stick – everything from fruit pies to whoopie pies – and consumers are clamoring to find the most unique options for gifts and parties.

Whatever you’re selling though, there is boundless opportunity online. The food industry’s uptick in web sales results from ecommerce capabilities becoming easier and more cost effective to manage. Even the smallest food companies are selling on their websites now, making it possible for consumers to find and buy goodies they otherwise wouldn’t have. With these boutique delicacies on the web, gift shoppers not only have access to foods from across the country, they can also conveniently shop for presents from home and have them sent fresh directly to the recipient’s door.

With all the opportunity, there is increased competition. Small bakeries are no longer only contending with brick-and-mortar stores in the neighborhood. Companies of all sizes and based throughout the nation compete alongside each other to win consumer dollars online.

To help your company standout and to grab a share of the rising food gifting trend, make sure to:

• Regularly add great pictures to your website. With tools like Instagram, you can do artistic shots on your own, or you can hire a professional to get the job done. Either way, visuals are imperative.
• Add keywords to your website whenever possible. Increase your website’s searchability in key buying times by including keywords associated with holidays, shopping, gifts and wrapping.
• Check out subscription option to websites that can help market edible gifts for very little cost SEO, public relations, social media and advertising efforts.
• Consider specialty packaging and the option to include a note with shipping for items targeted as gifts so that the shopper knows it will make a great first impression on delivery.

About the author: As the first and only website dedicated to helping consumers find unique edible presents, Goodies For Gifts features companies from across the country known for fabulous foods that can easily be bought and shared with their loved ones for their birthdays, holidays or any day. Launched in late 2011 by Lynn Steinberg, a food reviewer and lifelong edible gift giver, Goodies For Gifts is the first and only site of its kind dedicated to helping small mom and pop type food companies market their products. For more information, to find the perfect present or to become a vendor, visit