You need a Christmas gift for your favorite teacher. It’s your boss’s birthday. Your best friend just lost her pet. Or your neighbor did you a huge favor.
Why not acknowledge life’s moments like these with just a little bit more than an e-mail, card or Facebook post?
Well, now you can. An easy, new way to send a thoughtful small gift to someone special from a local business has come to Half Moon Bay.
It’s called Yiftee, an iPhone app and Internet service that lets Coastsiders send small real gifts — mostly under $20 — like a latte, glass of wine, frozen yogurt, manicure, rose or boutique item that the recipients pick up at a favorite local café, restaurant, shop, boutique or florist.
“It’s very easy and that’s the whole idea. It’s a win-win-win for gift-giver, gift-receiver, and merchant,” said Lori Laub, Yiftee co-founder based in Menlo Park.
So far Yiftee has partnered with Toque Blanche, The Half Moon Bay Wine and Cheese Co., Savvy Skirts, Cunha’s Country Store, Alena Jean and Nails by Christine Smith to launch Yiftee in Half Moon Bay.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with and we look forward to growing with them and welcoming more local merchants,” said Laub.
It takes just two minutes to thank a friend for a favor, using the Yiftee iPhone app on the go or Yiftee.com. Your friend gets a code that he/she brings to the store to pick up your gift, which is redeemed in seconds.
For example, they can send a ceramic garlic grater from Toque Blanche, a bling hair tie from Savvy Skirts or a sandwich, drink and chips from Cunha’s Country Store — to name just a few.
“When we heard about Yiftee, we signed up without a second thought — it’s just a great way to give gifts,” said Charles Nelson, owner of Toque Blanche on Main Street in Half Moon Bay.
Unredeemed gifts are credited back to the giver’s Yiftee account who can then give another gift. Any merchant can sell Yiftees by signing up on Yiftee.com or contacting Eliza Gray at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For merchants, Yiftee sells more products, drives foot traffic into the store and delivers free visibility on mobile and social media.
So far, Alena Barragan, owner of Alena Jean, likes the concept:
"Yiftee is a great way to send thoughtful gifts while promoting local business.”