Why Greeting Cards Prosper In the Digital Age

Do you remember when everyone thought that e-books would spell the death of books?

It didn’t happen, and if anything, books are more popular now than when e-books appeared on the scene.


Is the reason that books are tangible sensory objects, that digital writing surfaces cannot match? That’s what some people have said. But really that’s after-the-fact reasoning. First came the surprising continuing popularity of books, and then came the explanation to explain the event. That’s not to say that the reason is wrong, and maybe it is the sensory experience that people crave.

But what if I came up with some other equally credible reasons for the continuing popularity of books?

For example, it could be that people like books because they are low tech. You can shove a book in your bag and it will be there waiting when you next reach in there. You can’t say that for e-books. Perhaps the battery will have run down. Perhaps that bottle of juice will have spilled a thimbleful into the electronics.

In other words, perhaps it is just the simplicity of books that keeps people coming back to read them. And the point is, who can say which is the correct reason?

No one can, not for certain.

So now, why have greeting cards prospered in the digital age?

Why Have Greeting Cards Survived and Prospered?

There are so many steps to go through. You have to choose the card, then buy the card. Then you have to write the message, find the address and address the envelope. That’s not the end of it, of course. There’s the stamp to put on the envelope and the postbox into which the card must be put. What a rigmarole compared to an email or an e-card.

Why, despite the ease of digital communications by email or e-cards, do greeting cards still loved and used by millions?

The Facts: Cards Are Popular

We had better check it is true that cards are still popular.

The Greeting Card Association surveys greeting card sales and consumers’ habits every year. And the surveys show that real cards remain popular despite the rise of digital communication.

And what do those surveyed say is the reason they have remained popular? It is because greeting cards offer a personal and tangible connection that cannot be replicated by digital means.

For one, receiving a physical greeting card allows the recipient to hold and touch something that has been specifically chosen for them. The act of opening a card and reading its message is a sensory experience that elicits emotions and memories in a way that simply cannot be replicated by screens or digital devices. The recipient can hold the card in their hands, feel the texture of the paper, and establish a connection with the sender. They know that the sender touched the card that they are now touching and reading.

In addition, sending a physical greeting card is a tangible expression of thought and effort. The act of going to a store to select a card, writing a message, and mailing it shows the sender has taken time and consideration to create a special moment for the recipient. This is why greeting cards are often treasured and kept as keepsakes, serving as a physical reminder of special memories and moments shared with loved ones.

Digital communication methods may be convenient and quick, but they lack the personal touch and human connection of a physical card. Digital communication methods can feel impersonal and lack the emotional impact that a physical greeting card can have.

Then There’s Privacy

There’s something else, physical greeting cards offer a level of privacy that digital communications cannot. A physical card can only be read by the intended recipient, and its personal message remains between the sender and the recipient. In contrast, emails can be forwarded or shared with others, and digital messages are stored on servers and may be accessed by third parties.

The bottom line is that the numbers support the view that despite the ease of digital communication, greeting cards continue to be popular. And when asked, people say it is because of the personal, tangible, and emotional connection that cannot be replicated by screens or digital devices. Cards provide a touch of humanity in a world increasingly dominated by technology. It’s why Greeting Cards Prosper In the Digital Age.

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