How to choose a gift basket
Gift baskets can make great presents, but it's important to think carefully about what you choose. This is especially true if you're shopping for a gift basket to give in a professional context to a boss or coworker. Baskets filled with food and other treats can be a nice way of showing you care, and you'll appear more thoughtful as a gift-giver if you make your choice personal and appropriate for the relationship to your recipient. Here are some things to think about that can help narrow down your product options as you shop.
- Occasion: There are multiple occasions for which a gift basket is appropriate, from corporate holiday gift giving to condolences for friends or family members in mourning. Clearly, those two events are different from each other, and that means you'll probably want to buy different baskets. From the actual contents of the basket itself to the way it's decorated, make sure the basket you choose strikes the right tone for the recipient in context of the occasion you're marking.
- Budget: Gift baskets are available in a range of different price points, which means you can find something even on a more limited budget. However, it's important to consider price in the context of what's included in the basket. Something that includes a lot of different foods that has a very low price might not appear as advertised, or it might include items in smaller portions, which might not work as well if you're sending something to a family or group. Getting something smaller that's filled with larger, higher-quality items can be more effective. In other words, less can be more when it comes to buying a gift basket on a budget.
- Presentation: As you shop, look at product photos and descriptions carefully. Some gift baskets don't come with any special wrapping or decorations, while others feature decorative paper, bows and other items that can make the presentation more special. If you're giving a basket to someone you want to make feel special or impress, going for a more formal presentation with appropriate decorations is a good idea. Baskets with less decoration can also be a welcome gift, but they may look less presentable and make less of a first impression.
Knowing the recipients
One good thing that makes gift baskets such an easy go-to gift is the fact that they include so many different items. This means that most people can find at least several things they like out of the bunch. However, if you don't know enough about your recipients' preferences, you may end up getting a basket that includes items they don't want. In order to really maximize the effectiveness of the basket and avoid giving offense or excluding anyone, think about where your recipients are likely to fall in these areas.
- Quantity: A huge gift basket may be welcome in many situations, but in others, it might be a little too much. For example, if you want to get a gift for a client that has two people working in their office, you don't need to get a basket with enough food to feed a huge crowd. However, if your client has a dozen employees in their office, you can get that bigger basket and feel confident that everyone who works there will get to enjoy at least a little bit of what's inside.
- Dietary preferences: A lot of people are health conscious, while others avoid certain foods for ethical, religious or preference reasons. You don't want to send a gift basket stuffed with meat and cheese if the recipients are vegans. It's also a good idea to avoid sending a chocolate and caramel basket to people who are trying to limit their sugar intake. If you don't know the recipients personally and aren't sure whether they have specific dietary preferences, look for a basket that favors healthy foods like fruit. You may also get good results with a basket that includes a range of different items so there isn't too much of one thing.
- Allergies and other restrictions: Similarly, you should be sensitive to any medical or religious restrictions that limit what gift recipients can eat. Allergies can be serious enough that it might be worthwhile to ask someone in the know, like a friend's spouse or a client's secretary, whether there are any types of food the recipient absolutely cannot eat or even be exposed to. This kind of thoughtfulness will make your gift mean even more.