Finding unique gifts for clients isn’t always easy. And getting appropriate gifts that are budget-friendly are even more difficult.
In this guide, you’ll find lots of unique gift ideas and solutions!
As each year wraps up, your thoughts are turned to ending the year on a high note. And with that you probably want to find ways to show business clients how much you appreciate them.
Many of my clients and colleagues are inspiring and enjoyable to work with.
But the question we’re all facing is, what should you give clients for the holidays and how much should you spend?
Is a Christmas card or a basket of fruit appropriate, or should it be something more expensive or maybe even a bit more personal?
13 Gift Ideas for Clients
If you do buy a unique gift for your business clients, make sure you don’t overspend. There are lots of gift ideas and ways you can express your gratitude without a ton of money.
Linsey Knerl from 1099Mom suggests basing your gift on the amount of revenue or length of the relationship.
Clients with revenue over $5K, for example, will get a better gift than a client that only worked on one or two projects.
Keep your gifts in proportionate to the income you received from that client throughout the year.
This isn’t to say that one client is better than the other, you just don’t want to eat up all your revenue on a $100 client by purchasing a $100 gift.
Here are 13 gift ideas for your Christmas gifts for clients that cost less than $40.
1. Business gift baskets and food
A business gift basket is always a safe bet since it doesn’t cost much and everyone loves food.
Get creative with the baskets you choose or even try to make your own.
2. Physical gifts
Is it better to give virtual or physical gifts? The answer depends on the client and their personality.
If the type of business they run is mostly online and done virtually, they’re probably used to dealing with non-tangible transactions.
However, if your client prefers to touch and feel their products, then a physical gift is the better choice.
3. Coffee, tea, or other drinks
When it comes to physical products for the office, coffee, and tea-related gifts are always a smart choice.
These are drinks that usually fuel the creative process, and you can never have too much creative fuel!
4. Office supplies
Clients will never say no to good office supplies and the good news is that this is a cost-effective and practical gift.
It’s something that’s personal and unique without spending a lot of money. Plus, there’s a high likelihood of them actually using these gifts.
5. Notebooks or journals
Office supply gifts can include organizational supplies, calendars, or books.
Clients always enjoy high-quality notebooks, journals, or other office-type supplies! You can never have too many of these.
6. Spread holiday cheer virtually
You can also use a service like Paperless Post. They have a huge selection of holiday cards to choose from, many of which are free, and all of them can be personalized with your own brand message.
The best part is the “envelope” feature that personalizes each card with the recipient’s name on the front — just like a real letter.
7. Gift cards are always welcomed
If you’re looking for really awesome virtual gift ideas, gift cards are always a welcomed form of a holiday present
And these are things you can never have too many of. Go the extra mile though and present the gift card in a nice basket or card.
8. Make a donation in their name
Another idea is to make a donation in the client’s name. I have a client who has requested any Christmas gifts or money to be donated to their favorite charity.
You can do the same thing with your clients! You and your brand will be viewed as generous, and as an added bonus, you’ll get a tax write-off too.
9. Memorable gifts
Anything that’s crafty, particularly unique and memorable or personal, can go a long way to build a long-lasting client relationship.
Trolling through Amazon or Etsy shops is a great place to start, or if you’re a creative person try your hand at a few Pinterest-inspired crafts.
10. Business-branded gifts
Items like branded gifts are both good for morale and marketing, such as the personalized Sharpie markers with your site’s URL.
You could also send a handwritten card or a small gift that reflects the relationship you’ve developed together (like an inside joke).
11. Customized personal items
I’ve been working with one of my business clients for three years and he deserves something more than just a holiday card.
I ordered a custom wood pen (he just started renting out his own office space to expand the business) and it’s something more personal than just buying a pen.
This gift is especially smart for business clients with large companies, or if you work with corporate clients, who are overloaded with lots of fruit baskets and gifts for the holidays.
12. Discounts on services or products
Consider offering your most exclusive business clients a discount on future orders, consulting services, and products. You could also host a holiday giveaway.
Make sure you explain it’s your way of thanking them for putting up with you all year (this is what I did for my loyal newsletter subscribers).
13. Anything that says “thank you”
Again, take time to say “thank you”. That alone will affect your client, overall the gifts in the world.
Something creative or thoughtful will have a bigger impact than something you randomly picked up at the store.
Should You Give Business Clients Gifts?
Remember, it’s the thought that counts with your business client so you don’t have to go overboard. Choose a few of these and put them together for a custom gift that never goes out of style.
And don’t be envious of the big brands that spend a lot of money on holiday gifts.
As a small business, you can interact with your clients in a much more genuine and personal way!
Before thinking of the best holiday gifts for clients, first, decide whether or not you should give them something at all.
Of course, it’s always nice to say “thank you” and send an ecard or snail mail letter. But what if your client is brand new? Will an email suffice? Or should you spend a bit more time and money?
That answer is that it depends on the client and the long-term relationship potential. If this is a one-off project (or they give you sporadic assignments) then you probably don’t have to worry about gifting them anything.
A few other factors to consider when gifting include:
- How easy (or difficult) of a client they are — it could be time to re-evaluate the relationship
- How much you enjoy the project
- The time & effort the work takes to complete
- How well you’re compensated, or paid on time
- The length of time you’ve been working together
Coincidentally, this was a question I was asked via email, so I wanted to share my thoughts!