US bank launches free Zelle e-cards

American bank is trying to adapt to the pandemic holiday with new e-cards aimed at spreading joy through contactless cash donations, according to a press release.

eCards can be sent with payments made as gifts via Zelle in the bank’s mobile app. The eCards, made in collaboration with FinTech startup Vouchr, will offer over 200 personalized designs for customers to choose from, including themes such as “holidays, but also birthdays, graduations, a simple thank you or congratulations“, among others. The release says the cards are “animated, dynamic and may include a message.”

The cards are free for US Bank customers, the statement said, and will be easy to include with payments.

The purpose of the cards is to provide a safe, contactless way to spread holiday greetings during the pandemic, intended to avoid health issues or to go to the post office or the grocery store just to buy a card.

Zelle is used for fast transactions where funds are usually made available within minutes in the recipient’s bank account.

Zelle’s transactions are up 64% since last year, with faster growth during the pandemic as customers seek digital ways to send money. Recently, Zelle surpassed one billion payments in 12 months. US Bank’s work with Zelle, the statement said, “is part of the company’s broader strategy to enhance the customer experience with intuitive and easy-to-use digital capabilities that are fast and secure.”

Gift card sales are up this year, PYMNTS writes, with the pandemic’s push toward online shopping fueling the trend. The data, according to Todd DipaolaCEO of consumer intelligence firm InMarket, shows how people have adapted to the new way of shopping during the pandemic.

“The data is clear: gift cards are booming for the holidays, and the net effect could be a Q1 boost as they’re used in the new year,” he said. declared, according to PYMNTS. “Gift cards are no longer a last minute gift – they add an option in uncertain times, showing the power of choice.”

New PYMNTS Study: How Consumers Use Digital Banks

A PYMNTS survey of 2,124 US consumers shows that while two-thirds of consumers have used FinTechs for some aspect of banking, only 9.3% call them their primary bank.

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