Lolligift is one of those ‘why didn’t I think of that’ services which takes the pain out of one simple task – in this case collective gift giving – in a clever and easy to use way. The idea is you set up a gift ‘event’ (say for a colleague who’s leaving the company or a birthday etc), enter in the details of the recipient, dates, proposed gift etc, and the service then does all the collaborative stuff like emailing your co-conspirators to get them to donate, and discuss whether blue or pink is a better choice.
That’s it really. Oh apart from the fact that the service also handles all the donations via credit card or Paypal, which are then sent on to the organiser of the event. Interestingly organisers don’t have to donate to the gift if they don’t want to, while collaborators must if they want to get onto the e-card. The service also takes a small fee from the contributors to pay for the service, rather like a credit card fee.
It’s US only at the moment (although contributors can come from anywhere) and still in beta, although it looks fairly complete from here. A nice little application all round.
Here’s how it works: You as the organizer tells us about the special occasion and whom you’re collecting for. Think of a gift idea, set the total amount you’re collecting and a suggested amount each person should contribute to reach that goal. Don’t worry if your math is bad, we have a fancy calculator ? lolligift makes inviting people a breeze by allowing you to add people from your address book (Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo). Each person will receive a customized email from you explaining lolligift and asking them whether they’d like to pitch in (All major credit cards and PayPal accepted). A link is included to a ‘Gift Pool’ page that will be the center of activity until you’ve raised the total amount.