0

Are you sure?

You still have in your basket

If you continue to our gift website, these items will not be present in your new Utility Gift basket.s in your basket won't carry over to the gift site.

However, your Utility Design shopping basket will be saved here for 30 days should you wish to return to it.

Sign Up To The Utility Newsletter For 10% OFF Your First Order

  1. Home
  2. Blog
  3. The Psychology Of Gifting | Infographic

The Psychology Of Gifting | Infographic

Every Christmas, birthday, anniversary and special occasion, we carefully choose and offer gifts to our loved ones. It’s something we do naturally and most of us don’t think about its deeper implications. Yet, the gift we choose and how we present it says so much about us, our relationships, and the complex social structures within our community. Behind every perfect present lie social, psychological and emotional currents.

We were forwarded this interesting gifting infographic from Activity Superstore and thought we'd share it. It runs through a the important gifts given throughout history as well as tips on giving the perfect gift today.

Buying gifts can fun but also quite stressful so every little helps right? Have a look below and maybe you'll find some inspiration.


Important gifts throughout history


Types of gifts

Selecting the perfect gift can seem like an impossible challenge sometimes. Research from the University of California examined the motivations and symbolism behind the gifts we give and proposed that there are four main types of gifts:

  • Gifts that are symbolic of the self and of the giver
  • Gifts that are symbolic of the giver’s knowledge of the receiver
  • Gifts that are symbolic of the occasion
  • Gifts that are expressive and contain an array of significant meanings

In the paper Motivations and Symbolism in Gift-Giving Behavior, Mary Finley Wolfinbarger argues that the favourite gifts often fall into the second category and are gifts that the receiver wants but wouldn’t have bought themselves. Least favourite gifts were too symbolic of the giver and had little to do with the receiver. However, Wolfinbarger argues that most gifts are actually a compromise between what the receiver would like and what the giver would like the receiver to have.

Selecting the right gift

Most popular gifts and gift ideas

So, what types of gifts are popular in today’s society? Research shows that 63% of Brits buy entertainment related gifts like CDs or DVDs, while 57% buy clothing and 47% buy food and drink-related gifts. Other common gift ideas include gift cards, personalised gifts and experiences.

Recent research from the University of Toronto Scarborough reveals that giving an experience strengthens your relationship with the receiver more than a physical gift. This is primarily due to the fact that experience gifts elicit stronger emotional responses while they are being enjoyed. For example, speeding around a go kart track releases adrenaline while massages provide relaxation. Nonetheless, when selecting an experience it’s still important to consider the recipient to make sure you choose something that’s appropriate, which they will look forward to.

Now that you're caught up with all things gifting, why not take a look at our huge selection of gift ideas here.


Time for more? Designer of the Month : Jean Prouvé | Utility Follows : Nicola Capper | Jens Fager's Tip Lamp wins Design Award

Original source : Activity Superstore

Next Working Day Delivery

View UK delivery options

Delivering to 150 Countries

View delivery options

Thank You Messages

I have rarely experienced such excellent quality advice, support and reliability. Your staff communicate effectively and helpfully. I am a truly satisfied customer. I love my String Shelving and I will not hesitate to return to Utility for my next purchase. Thank you!

Oct 24th 2019 | Sarah

Your customer service has been fantastic. I'm seriously impressed. Really pleased to be able to place the bigger order and make your time worthwhile. I think I need to send you a medal!

May 19th 2019 | Jason

I just wanted to express my thanks again for your great customer service. I ordered my items less than 24 hours ago and I’ve amended my order- yet I still have my order here with me now. You went out of your way to deliver my order and I’m very grateful. I wish more places had people like you :-)

May 14th 2019 | Louise

Thanks so much for your extraordinary service. -

Jun 19th 2019 | Maria (US)

Thanks again for such amazing customer service - I have honestly been so impressed by everything! Thank you for doing such a wonderful job

Jun 19th 2019 | Amber

Excellent customer service and immediate response to enquiry (live chat). Very happy every time used Utility both online and on high street.

Jun 28th 2019 | Jo

I couldn't be happier with the custom made sofa bought through the online store. It is perfect and made all the more enjoyable by buying it through the guys at utility. Ben and Paul who delivered the sofa were amazing, kind and really helpful in a difficult situation (of course the lift broke when I was getting something delivered). Would highly recommend!

Aug 13th 2019 | Holly

Just wanted to message and say that I'm a big fan of the Utility Stores and the types of products you guys sell. I work close by to the Manchester store at University Green, so I'm popping in a fair bit generally for cards, gifts, etc. I just nipped in again this afternoon about one product I'd bought earlier and the staff were super helpful and attentive. It made it really easy, and I was in and out in no time.

Aug 13th 2019 | Richard

Just wanted to drop you guys a quick note to say how happy I am with the service I have had. Especially the two guys who delivered/carried into an awkward space/built/then took away the packaging, not to mention then gave me a lift into town. Thank you. Plus the sofa looks amazing. I will definitely be using you guys more in the future and will highly recommend you to anyone who will listen.

Sep 13th 2019 | Luke

Thank you for all your help and customer service, the Eames Lounge Chair arrived yesterday and I love it.

Nov 1st 2019 | Ross

Comment: I just wanted to say that Esther on the checkout in the L1 store made my day today she was so friendly

Dec 9th 2019 | Katy