Posts by idalina

Starting a Wedding/Event Floral Company

February 14th, 2018 Posted by Become A Floral Designer, Blog, design prepping, events, Floral Design, Florist Marketing, Florist Operations, florist-software, Opening a Flower Shop, seo, wedding trends, weddings 2 thoughts on “Starting a Wedding/Event Floral Company”

You are a creative and passionate florist, but have you ever considered specializing?

More and more, floral professionals are opting to focus their love of flower design into only catering to wedding/events flower arrangements. Specializing as an event florist can be very advantageous as it allows you to fully build your brand and perfect your craft. If you are currently a full-service florist then perhaps you may want to consider maximizing your wedding/event profits. In the US alone there is an average of 2.3 million weddings, and approximately $72 billion is spent on weddings each year.

Image via Shutterstock

Know How to Design Blooms

If you are reading this blog, then chances are you are already know how to arrange flowers. If becoming an event florist is something new you’d like to explore, the most important thing to do before jumping into floral arranging for events is to learn your craft. Although an exciting career, floral event design can be very demanding. We recommend finding a mentor or working with a local florist or wedding/event floral professional. As easy as floral designing can look, there are principles and techniques that are necessary to follow. Know your basics, know your flowers and develop your skills.

  • Find your special design style
  • Know your flowers and how to prep them
  • Get comfortable with floral tools, knives, wire, tape, etc.

Image via Shutterstock

Establish Your Floral Brand

Marketing is the #1 criteria for your success, so think long and hard about your floral event company name, domain name, and logo. You will need a website—remember, websites are not for just selling products, they build your brand and make your wedding/event company relevant on search engines. Opt for a non-eCommerce floral website to use as a portfolio.

Must-Haves

  • Company name
  • Logo
  • Domain name (be sure to purchase your own domain name) 
  • Website
  • Blog
  • Social media accounts such as Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter
  • Sign up for Google business
  • Business cards/marketing materials (t-shirts, totes, pamphlets)
  • Clearly consider what type of events you are going to cater to and emphasize all individually on your floral portfolio website (weddings, showers, anniversaries, birthdays, sweet 16, quinceañera, corporate events, weekly hotel or business floral arrangements)

Image via Shutterstock

Keep Your Floral Event Company Organized

Whether working out of a studio or storefront it is important to have organization! Your floral event company starts with supplies, you will not need flowers until the day you are ready to design your booked events, however, you will need basic flower tools, flower cutters, tape, glue, wire, and a floral wedding/event management software to help keep you professionally organized and allow you to estimate and understand your profits.

Make sure your wedding/event proposals include the following:

  • Date
  • Location(s)
  • Color scheme
  • Descriptive flower information
  • Payment terms
  • Cancellation policy
  • “Act of God” policy
  • Customer signature(s)

Image via Shutterstock

Create an Event Network of Professionals

There is no marketing campaign that compares to word of month, but in order to acquire word of mouth you do need to book some floral events. You can start by creating a network which will recommend your services, perhaps for a discount. Professionals working in conjunction is very convenient for potential customers, and profitable for you with establishing a new floral event company it is a must do. Grab your pamphlets, you professional sassiness and go out and get your self a network of professional business owners which will recommend your services and vice versa.

Consider these Businesses as Network Partners

  • Photographers
  • DJs/musicians
  • Bridal and tuxedo shops
  • Hair, makeup, nail salons
  • Venues
  • Hotels

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Invest in Affordable Paid Marketing

The cost of starting a floral event company is minimal compared to other businesses, however, do set aside some cash for paid marketing. Unless you have potential customers waiting for you to open so they can flood you with bookings, you must invest in some paid marketing campaigns to keep your brand visible and profitable. Results may be immediate depending on location and competition, or may take some time.

The process of marketing is about connecting the dots. No one marketing tool is going to maximize your floral business, however multiple marketing strategies such as social media, word of mouth, brand awareness, professional networking, your personal website, and blogging and paid marketing is sure to result in a successful floral event business (or any business, for that matter).

Consider these low-cost paid options:

  • Google AdWords (consider running these during peak times, and keep a budget)
  • Join The Knot or Wedding Wire
  • If you cant write a blog, hire someone who can (prices range from $100 to $250 per blog, but these are your blogs which can be posted on your website to generate potential customers)
  • Facebook ads (Facebook allows you to target a specific demographic)
  • Participate in Wedding/Bridal shows
  • Post an online video

Image via Shutterstock

Did You Know…

  • Most weddings take place in June, with May, September, and October trailing close behind
  • Holiday parties take the #1 spot for corporate events
  • There are more birthdays in September than any other month
  • Most popular wedding flower is the rose

 

Florists, do you have any important advice or feedback on starting a floral event design company? Please share your feedback, tips or any floral event related questions in the comment section below.

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Floranext offers great florist software, florist POS, florist websites and florist wedding proposal software. Our florist technology products are built by florists, for florists. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.

 

Must-Dos When Your Flower Shop Gets a Bad Review

February 7th, 2018 Posted by Blog, Florist Ecommerce, Florist Marketing, Florist Operations, Search Engine Optimization, seo 1 thought on “Must-Dos When Your Flower Shop Gets a Bad Review”

“Help, someone left me a bad review online!”

So what do you do? First, remember that any business on Yelp, Facebook, or Google may get an occasional bad review. It’s unreasonable for a florist to expect a perfect 5-star review every time. And sometimes a less-than-perfect review can actually be helpful to your floral business!

But even so, there are a few important steps you should take whenever you receive a poor review online.

Image via Shutterstock

Bad Reviews Can Be Helpful!

Let’s touch on this briefly—unless all your business reviews are bad, a couple bad reviews can actually make your good reviews stand out and look better. It also shows customers that your reviews are real and creates a sense of authenticity.

And of course, a few poor reviews next to many positive ones are not going to deter customers—many shoppers are perfectly comfortable viewing a couple negative reviews as outliers.

Image via pexels.com

How Should You Respond if Your Flower Shop Gets a Bad Review?

No one is perfect or can be perfect all the time, especially in business when sometimes things happen that are beyond our control. There may have been miscommunication with the customer, late delivery, etc.

One course of action you should avoid is reaching out to the site itself (Google, Yelp, etc.) to ask that they remove a bad review. The ethics of this are questionable and it is almost always unsuccessful. Unless you know the review to be fraudulent or meant for another shop, we do not recommend this approach.

1. Respond to the Review

Regardless if the bad review is authentic you need to respond ASAP. Customers and readers (potential customers) want to see that a negative review did not go unaddressed.

2. Weigh Your Response

It is important to formulate your responses appropriately. You don’t need to offer a full refund in the poor review response, but be sure to read the review and determine the reason for the bad review—is the customer incorrect? Was there miscommunication between you? Was it simply an error on your part?

When communicating with the reviewing customer, consider the points below:

  • Don’t be defensive
  • Acknowledge the issue
  • Protect your brand
  • Highlight the positive aspects of your business in your response

 

If there was poor communication before, this could be an opportunity to make things right.

3. Offer a Resolution Offline

Always offer a resolution offline. There are many possible resolutions to a customer’s issue that can win them back for the long term. In your response, be sure to list contact information to continue the discussion privately. Below is a quick example:

Hi-

I’m the manager/owner of XYZ Flower Shop. We pride ourselves on maintaining the highest quality standards for our customers. We hope you will give us an opportunity to discuss this further. You can reach us at (235)867-5309 or email us at [email protected] We hope to resolve this to your benefit and earn you back as a customer.

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4. Don’t Beat Yourself Up

No business owner is invulnerable to bad reviews. The most important thing is to learn something from a bad review and move forward. Florists often take a bad review very personally and should not. Use a bad review to improve your business.

And remember that the online review game isn’t just about waiting for good reviews and fending off bad ones: always encourage satisfied customers to review you. For better or for worse, reviews are often read by online shoppers, so they aren’t going away.

 

Florists, how have bad reviews affected your floral business? How have you resolved a bad review? Please share your feedback and questions in the comment section below.

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Floranext offers great florist software, florist POS, florist websites and florist wedding proposal software. Our florist technology products are built by florists, for florists. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.

4 Reasons to Use a Vanity Email

February 1st, 2018 Posted by Blog, Florist Ecommerce, Florist Marketing, florist technology, Florist Websites 0 thoughts on “4 Reasons to Use a Vanity Email”

Vanity emails go a long way in branding your floral business.

But are they necessary? If you are still using AOL, Gmail or Yahoo as your business email you are missing out on opportunities to present your brand—as many opportunities as there are emails you send, in fact.

Image via Shutterstock

What is a Vanity Email?

Simply put, a vanity email is an email that includes your floral business/domain name. Generally, if you have a website domain name, you want to use your domain name in your vanity email, for example [email protected] instead of [email protected]. The typical structure is [email protected].

You can set up a vanity email through your domain registrar.

Image via Shutterstock

Why Vanity Emails are a Crucial Addition to Your Flower Business

All your shop’s public personality feeds into your brand, and using a vanity email can help connect the dots from your website to your business communications. Your logo and website are important, but so is the way you project your brand with every communication.

1. Vanity emails help make your business memorable!

A vanity/business email helps to ingrain your business name with these recipients. Creating your email identity making you recognizable. Compare [email protected] with [email protected]: which is more engaging, which is easier to remember? Every impression counts, even through email.

2. Vanity emails create assurance and trust!

Anyone can create a free email account, which can leave email recipients feeling vulnerable. Having a business vanity email helps in solidifying you as a professional business owner giving you/your flower business credibility. As a customer, you can be sure that the [email protected] address was created by the same people who control the flowershop.com website, and all messages you receive from that address are coming from a shop employee.

3. Vanity emails keeps emails organized!

The beauty of vanity emails is that you can create emails for different departments, such as [email protected] and [email protected]. This will help give a clear direction to your customers on who handles specific email content. You will still have access to all these departments, but it will establish an organized response system.

4. Vanity emails are reasonably priced!

Besides these other important benefits, the cost of setting up a vanity email is almost negligible. Marketing/branding for your floral business comes in a lot of shapes and some options are very costly, but having a vanity email is worth every penny you spend. It is also easy to set up through your current domain provider.

 

Florists, do you have a vanity email? How have vanity emails changed your floral business? Please share your feedback and questions in the comment section below.

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Floranext Logo

Floranext offers great florist software, florist POS, florist websites and florist wedding proposal software. Our florist technology products are built by florists, for florists. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.

The History of Valentine’s Day

January 24th, 2018 Posted by Blog, florals for Valentines, Flower History, Valentine's Day 2 thoughts on “The History of Valentine’s Day”

Ever wonder how we came to celebrate Valentine’s Day with roses?

Valentine’s Day is observed all across the world, and many consider this one of their favorite holidays. Celebrating romantic love, friendship, kindness and sweetness with flowers as the #2 most gifted, candy-chocolate #3 and greeting cards being #1.

Image via Google

How Valentine’s Day Began

Saint Valentine’s Day is celebrated on February 14, but why? The story goes that in Rome around 269 AD, Saint Valentine was performing weddings for soldiers. Saint Valentine was arrested and imprisoned. While imprisoned he fell in love with a jailer’s daughter. Before his execution on February 14, 269 AD, he wrote her a letter signed “Your Valentine” as a final farewell, and the saying has stuck ever since.

Although a grim story, the association with undying romantic love captured the hearts of hopeless romantics, philosophers, and poets. Around the 14th century, Saint Valentine’s Day or Valentine’s Day became a tradition in what’s called courtly love. Knights would show their love for the ladies by performing services of nobility and chivalry with handwritten love notes, now better known as greeting cards.

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How Roses Gained a Part in Valentine’s Day

We all know roses—especially red roses—are a quintessential symbol of Valentine’s Day, much like poinsettias represent the Christmas season. But why roses? Florists aren’t complaining, as roses are very hardy and feature a long-lasting bloom. Besides any other flower, roses have historical relevance. It’s amazing how flowers, and roses especially, have resonated with all kinds of people throughout the centuries.

Roses are said to have become linked to Valentine’s Day during the 17th century, with tales of the rose being a symbol of Venus, the classical goddess of love.

Floriography exploded in the Victorian era, making a gift of Valentine’s Day roses a form of communication. In floriography, each rose color represents the giver’s feelings toward the recipient.

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Roses and Their Meanings By Color

Thanks to the conservative, emotionally-reserved nature of Victorian society, one would avoid speaking words of feeling, so the “talking bouquets” of floriography grew tremendously popular.

Below are some meanings of common rose colors:

  • Red rose: Romantic love, desire (can be expressed with a single red rose)
  • White rose: Innocence and charm
  • Mixed red and white roses: Unity
  • Light pink rose: Grace
  • Dark pink rose: Thankfulness
  • Medium pink rose: Happiness
  • Lavender rose: Enchantment, love at first sight
  • Burgundy rose: Beauty
  • Coral rose: Desire
  • Orange rose: Fascination
  • Peach rose: Modesty, immortality
  • Yellow rose: Friendship, joy, gladness
  • Mixed colored roses: You’re everything to me

 

Florists, do you have any Valentine’s Day history or trivia to share? Feel free to leave a comment below.

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Floranext offers great florist software, florist POS, florist websites and florist wedding proposal software. Our florist technology products are built by florists, for florists. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.

Why Google Search Results May Vary – Florist SEO

December 6th, 2017 Posted by Blog, Florist Ecommerce, Florist Marketing, Florist Operations, florist technology, Florist Websites, seo, Uncategorized 0 thoughts on “Why Google Search Results May Vary – Florist SEO”

Yikes! My Google search results are different from device to device.

Before you pull your hair out, let’s start by pointing out that Google search result differences from browser to browser and from device to device is fairly typical. At one time, SERPs (search engine results pages) were very consistent throughout different browsers and computers, but now there are many components that can fluctuate from one user to the next.

Floral website administrators puzzled by the effects of Google search results may attribute this to a bug or glitch, but the truth is it’s by design. In this blog we’ll examine why you or some users may see your floral website search algorithms differently.

Google Random Testing

Google is continually tweaking their search algorithms, which means that as many as 40% of Google searches may be used in testing. This will cause differences in search engines results, so don’t be concerned if your search engine results tend to fluctuate for a period of time, these variations will usually resolve itself quickly.

Search History/Google Accounts

Google will harvest as much information as it can. Any content you view in-browser will be cached and may inform your first results, which means sites you visit frequently will show up on top of your SERP.

Any Google accounts you’re logged into—Gmail, Google+, Youtube, etc.—may also affect your SERPs as Google will use this data to bring up search results.

Geographic Location

Did you know all websites you visit can tell where you are located, thanks to your IP address? Search results consistent with your location will most likely be given top priority. Your location information is stored in a cookie in your browser, and this information will factor into all your Google searches. (Cookies are little files stored on your computer that hold information specific to you, like saved passwords.)

Keyword Search

When searching on Google it is important to be consistent with your keywords, however there can still be some slight variation considering the number of search options on Google from content, video, and images. Any minor change in search terms could change your SERP completely.

Google Ads

We all have seen the Google Ads in SERPs, these are pay-per-click ads that can appear on the upper, side or lower page of Google search page. As the position of these ads changes on different devices, it could also affect your SERP results.

Google Data Centers

Every time users do a search on Google, there are data centers across the nation working to process the search result. Google search will gather results from the Google data center that is nearest to the user’s location. Although Google data centers do not affect your floral website search results that often, there may at times be differences in SERP depending on location in between updates.

Image via Shutterstock

So What Are We to Make of All This?

With so many moving pieces, is it even possible to get accurate search engines results? The answer is mostly yes, but sometimes no. Your floral website results should not vary that much from device to device, though fluctuating between a few stops is perfectly normal.

Checking your search engine results daily is not recommended for the many reasons explained above. Google will rank you according to the quality of your website, so make sure you update regularly and work on getting your results organically high on SERPs regardless of the minor fluctuations.

  • Engage with social media
  • Use backlinks
  • Encourage your customers to leave reviews
  • Consistently write blog posts
  • Update products and content on your website

Image via Shutterstock

How do I see Accurate Results?

The word accurate is used loosely here—remember, the goal is to have a website rich with quality keywords, links, and content. Although search results can be the same for most, they will be slightly different for some. If you want to check your floral website results you can do the following:

  • Use a different browser besides the one you use daily
  • Go “incognito” on Google Chrome (hold Ctrl + Shift + N)
    • Note: Incognito mode may still draw on location information
  • Log out of all your Google accounts, clear your browser cache, cookies, and history
    • Note: This will delete any stored passwords you may have!

In conclusion, there is no magic wand to prevent Googles algorithms from affecting your floral website results, but the most important thing is to be vigilant and give Google what it wants to see. There is no way any of us can control what cookies and history are stored on other users’ devices, however keeping a quality website is more important to raise your organic rankings.

 

How to Jingle Rock Your Holiday Floral Sales

November 22nd, 2017 Posted by Christmas, design prepping, events, Floral Design, Florist Ecommerce, Florist Marketing, Florist Profits, Florist Websites, Uncategorized 3 thoughts on “How to Jingle Rock Your Holiday Floral Sales”

 Forecasters predict that this holiday season will show higher revenue than others for retailers!

For most floral business owners, the holiday season brings in a tremendous amount of the year’s revenue, and early preparation is crucial to staying ahead of the competition.

Preparing for the winter holidays puts a lot of pressure on shoppers and retailers alike. What gift could be simpler or more beautiful than flowers? So now it becomes a question of presentation, and offering the right deals to get customers in the door.

Image via Shutterstock

Jolly Promotions

Promotions are not just for your big chain department stores. Flower shop owners have jumped on the holiday offers bandwagon and are expanding their profits with major bargain flower deals. Make sure to advertise your floral deals on your website, social media, email marketing and anywhere else you can.

Popular offers apply to items purchased only on one day or a range of time, although you should allow delivery on a future date. Here are some specific examples:

  • Decorated boxwood tree at 50% off
  • Gift with purchase
  • Buy one centerpiece, get the second free
  • Small gift card with purchase

You can adjust the deal to best suit your business, but bargains help to move other products.

Image via Shutterstock

A Dashing Web Presence

With 25% of shoppers projected to only shop online this holiday season, it is of great importance that your website is up to the task.

  • Display your holiday products, centerpieces, holiday decor, etc. in organized, easy-to-find categories on your floral website to create a user-friendly experience.
  • Make sure your store phone number, address and hours are displayed and can be seen easily. Some customers may prefer to call in their orders, but they’ll need to know how to reach you!
  • Check that your floral website is mobile friendly.
  • Write a blog entry or two about new seasonal products, tree decorating tips, etc.

Image via Shutterstock

 Appearance and Options Are Everything

Make sure your store is festively decorated for the holiday season! A warm, inviting interior encourages customers to keep browsing. Offer a variety products so that customers can purchase other gifts in addition to their floral purchases.

  • Make sure your flower shop is clean
  • Offer gift wrapping
  • Stock candles, chocolates, and plush
  • Decorate poinsettias with bows, pine sprigs, or twigs in beautiful containers.
  • Offer refreshments to customers like coffee, tea, or eggnog

Image via Shutterstock

Commercial and Residential Holiday Decor

In-business and in-home decor can be very lucrative for florists who participate. There are even companies that only offer holiday decor, this is something fairly simple to arrange.

  • Pursue contracts with local businesses for their outdoor wreath-making and indoor holiday decor
  • Offer mini decorated boxwood trees or Christmas trees
  • Call local restaurants and offer weekly holiday flowers for bars, counters, and tables

 

Florists, do you have any tips to share that have brought revenue to your floral business? Please share your feedback and questions in the comments below.

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Floranext makes great florist software: florist websites, floral POS, florist wedding/event proposal software, and florist technology. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.

Is Your Floral Website Secure?

November 16th, 2017 Posted by Blog, Florist Ecommerce, Florist Marketing, Florist Operations, Florist Point of Sale, Florist Resources, florist technology, Florist Websites, florist-software, Search Engine Optimization, Uncategorized 2 thoughts on “Is Your Floral Website Secure?”

Understand HTTPS for Your Florist Website

If you don’t understand how secure websites work, you are not alone.

So what are HTTP and HTTPS websites? HTTP is short for hypertext transfer protocol, and HTTPS adds an S for secure: secure hypertext transfer protocol. Is your eCommerce website HTTP or HTTPS? And if you don’t know, how can you tell?

HTTPS uses a Secure Socket Layer (SSL) to encrypt data transmitted over your website. SSL provides a coded encryption which scrambles the information into a series of random characters and once that information arrives at its destination—the other computer—it will unscramble itself and be readable again. The coded encryption is what keeps hackers from stealing sensitive information.

Florist Website Security - HTTPS

How Can You Tell if Your Floral Website is HTTPS?

When browsing the internet pay close attention to the websites you view and notice if they start with http://” or “https://”. Click the information icon and it will show you a message just like in the image below.

HTTPS Security

The image below is taken from a secured website. It has https:// in its URL, and if you’re using the Chrome browser you’ll also see the word Secure next to the padlock icon.

Secure Florist Website Example - HTTPS

Why HTTPS is a Must for Your Floral Website

Besides the security of customer data entered into your flower website, it is becoming mandatory on search engines.

  • Security of Data. When you have an SSL certificate on your website, all information passed between the user’s browser and the website including passwords and credit cards can potentially be intercepted. HTTPS protects customer data.
  • Customer confidence. With version 56 of Google Chrome released in 2017 any websites that require visitors to enter sensitive information will be marked as “Not Secure.” This is something your customers will notice immediately and can lower their confidence in ordering from your website.
  • SEO. Studies have shown that secured websites have higher search engine rankings
  • Website Load Times. HTTPS websites load faster, which also benefits your SEO.

Some unsecured websites that are HTTP look like this:

However, for some they already appear this way. This new warning is part of the long-term plan to distinguish pages from HTTP and let visitors know they are “Not secure.”


No doubt about it, HTTPS is and will be a requirement on all websites. Your customers deserve to shop with confidence and you owe it to your floral eCommerce to have a website that allows you to reach your fullest potential on search engines. Find out if your website is HTTP or HTTPS.

Florists, do you have any feedback or questions regarding HTTP and HTTPS websites? Please share in the comment section below.

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Floranext offers great florist software, florist POS, florist websites and florist wedding proposal software. Our florist technology products are built by florists, for florists. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.

 

Canny Flower Shop Business Fusions That Work!

November 8th, 2017 Posted by Become A Floral Designer, Blog, Florist Ecommerce, Florist Profits, Florist Resources, Opening a Flower Shop, Uncategorized 7 thoughts on “Canny Flower Shop Business Fusions That Work!”

Image via Shutterstock

Floral entrepreneurs are increasing their profits with a fresh new spin on the classic flower shop!

Financial experts agree that incorporating other services into your business is a win-win combination. You can diversify your business assets and minimize your vulnerability to twists and turns in the market.

On the other hand, combining a flower shop with another kind of business can raise sales as both work to give exposure to the other. More and more flower business owners are tackling more than just flowers.

Image via Shutterstock

Florist & Coffee Shop

Talk about the ultimate place for relaxation, sipping a coffee surrounded by beautiful flowers. Savvy floral entrepreneurs are creating a buzz with flower/coffee shop locations with customers waiting for seats and lines out the door.

  • Create a beautiful atmosphere surrounded by flowers and filled with wonderful scents.
  • Outdoor seating and ample comfortable seating inside the store.
  • Offer delivery of all coffee shop goods with your floral arrangements.
  • Offer delicate tasty treats and quick sandwiches and snacks.
  • Offer free Wifi

This is ultimately an easy combination to accomplish if you  already own a brick and mortar flower shop with enough space to accommodate seated customers. You may even consider partnering up with another business that specializes in coffee.

Image via Shutterstock

Florist & Hair/Beauty Salons

The secret to this combination business is markup. Florists know that flower shop product markup is low in comparison to other businesses, but hair salons have high markup, meaning a hair salon’s services are almost all profit (minus commission and the usual expenses like rent/mortgage and utilities). What you pay for in a hair salon is mostly labor. In the floral business, labor is not as prominent nor is it reflected as much in sales.

  • Establish a hair salon that offers great service and incorporates your flower shop.
  • It’s helpful to understand how beauty salons work, there are state licenses needed for both shop owner and barbers/hairstylists.
  • Offer options for event/wedding patrons with package pricing for flowers and beauty needs.
  • Prom packages never looked so good.
  • Offer delivery options for flowers and beauty products, flowers and gift certificates, flowers and gift baskets, etc.

Although it takes more sweat equity to obtain licenses and to incorporate a flower shop beauty salon, the payback could be well worth the effort. There currently aren’t many of these in the world, however, the few there are have had continued success.

Image via Shutterstock

Florist & Bakery

Unlike coffee shops, bakeries offer in-house baked goods, bread, pastries, and cakes. Flowers and baked goods go hand in hand, and what a great gift. Birthday flowers + birthday cake = tremendous brownie points and a crowd pleaser. Sales can’t come easier than that.

Flower shops have been teaming up with bakeries for a while now, the combination flower shop/bakery may be easier to pull off in families or with close partnerships between florists and bakers. Regardless of who bears which responsibility, the combination is sure to impress.

  • Offer wedding packages for flowers and wedding cake.
  • Team up with a reception hall to offer floral and baked good services for all their events.
  • Offer delivery options for all bakery goods with flowers.
  • Be sure to check local state and town laws for handling food with flowers.

Image via Shutterstock

Florist & Home Decor

Florists, we know many of you already incorporate home decor items in your flower shop, and you’re wise to do so. Flower shop owners now are taking it a step further: instead of incorporating some gift and home decor items, they are essentially opening two businesses in one location with a larger inventory of all things home decor: furniture, textiles, candles and more.

The trick is to offer more for customers to browse.

  • Think location and space, and consider parking.
  • Search for home decor vendors that allow you to maximize profit.
  • Offer delivery for home decor items, and bundle decor packages with flowers.
  • Sell both flowers and home decor items on your eCommerce website.

Consider location and square footage—this flower shop combo may require capital investment to get off the ground, however once established, you will be the talk of the town.

 


Florists, do you run a flower business combination shop? Let us know how running two businesses brought you success in the comment section below. If you have any questions please post below as well!

 

We wanted to share one of our reader’s feedback with the beautiful images he sent us!

From Joe Sexton, barber at Barber Stop/Flowers by Guenthers:

“My wife and I have a barber shop in our flower shop. The barber brings 4,000 more people every year through the front door of the flower shop. Many have never been inside. Also, the flower shop helps increase the barber shop sales. Women are the first to know when their guy are unhappy with their haircuts. They pick up the barbers’ flier and contact info which drives their guys into the shop for a haircut. Many buy flowers after their cuts to take home. Seems to work well.

“I am the barber in our flower shop. I have a shop that fits inside an 8′ circle anywhere in the store (within a 10′ for a regular 110-volt power outlet). It’s hard to visualize if you’ve never seen one.

“I think this would be a great idea for many florists. It’s really done well for my wife and I at Flowers by Guenthers.”

Photos courtesy of Joe Sexton, Flowers by Guenthers/Barber Stop

 

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Floranext makes great florist software. Florist websites, floral POS, florist wedding/event proposal software, and florist technology. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.

Stand Up to Internet Floral Order Gatherers

October 31st, 2017 Posted by Blog, Floral Order Gatherer, Florist Ecommerce, Florist Resources, Florist Websites, Florists' Thoughts, Uncategorized 8 thoughts on “Stand Up to Internet Floral Order Gatherers”

Image via Shutterstock

Have you worked hard to provide quality blooms and care to all your customers, only to be forced to compete with a floral order gatherer?

It can be frustrating and discouraging for florists who invest serious sweat equity into running a flower business only to see an eCommerce company to move in and pass themselves off as local florists.

There are many different kinds of floral order gathers, from the larger, well-known wire services to ones that take over search engines. We will focus on the floral order gatherers who run search engine ads that knowingly deceive their consumers, and offer you ways to maximize your sales and eCommerce legibility without worrying over order gatherers’ paid ads to lure customers into shopping with them under false pretenses.

Image via Shutterstock

What are Floral Order Gatherers?

Order gatherers—in this case, floral order gatherers—are virtual businesses that have no intention of filling the order purchased by its customers. What order gatherers essentially do is harvest the customer’s information and payment details and then look for real local florists to fulfill the order.

Order gatherers can benefit themselves and the filling flower shop alike, right? Well, yes and no. Order gatherers only pass along a fraction of the customer’s payment, and the customer gets less of what they actually paid for.

Floral order gatherers know that they profit by sending orders to a real local florist, while you the actual florist pay for mortgage/rent, utilities, employees, and product.

Another concern is that some order gatherers are passing themselves off as local florists when in actuality they do not run a flower shop or design flowers. You likely have seen their paid ads on search engines.

Below is an order gatherer’s paid ad on Google. (We covered the name of the order gatherer as well as their website address.) If you look at this ad you can see how easily a customers could believe this is a genuine San Diego florist. There is no indication that this company has nothing to do with fulfilling their order.

image provided by Google

A Step in the Right Direction: There have been several lawsuits filed by florists to stop these order gatherers from blatantly falsifying information on their ads regarding their location.

Image via Shutterstock

How to Beat Floral Order Gatherers

So what can you do to stand apart from floral order gathers that are taking over your area with paid ads on search engines? Unfortunately, there is no surefire way to stop them other than educating your consumers and marketing your floral business in a way in which it is not affected.

We understand that is easier said than done, however there are a few points working in your favor: floral order gatherers’ time is limited, there are more and more articles out to help consumers identify order gatherers, and consumers are wary of paying more for something only to get less.

Take these actions to brand yourself and increase your visibility as a legitimate local florist in your area, that will offer customers exactly what they paid for.

  1. Use a blog. If you have an option to add a blog to your floral website, do so and take an action on educating customers on what a real local florist offers versus a floral order gatherer. An article on your website on this topic will reach more people than visitors that just land on your web page. Besides discrediting order gatherers, this strategy will bolster consumer confidence in your floral eCommerce.
  2. Add content and write-ups. Add a gallery and write-ups of your flower business’s staff to your website to showcase you as a local florist.
  3. Consider your marketing. The advantage you have as a real local florist is that you do not have to spend a small fortune on ads that fundamentally deceive your customers you’re trying to attract. Market your flower business on social media consistently and be sure to ask satisfied customers to review your shop on Google and Yelp. The best way to do this is having links on your floral website to allow customers to easily click and review you.
  4. Use store promotions and offers. Floral order gathers offer many enticing promotions to entice customers to click and shop—refer to the search engine add above, offering 45% savings. We do not want you to give your flower arrangements away from free, however, consider running some enticing offers to get customers to click on your website. This is a great option for gaining new customers as well.
  5. Don’t forget about SEO. Your search engine optimization should be on point to compete with online businesses like order gatherers. Work with your floral website provider to make sure you are listing on the first page on search engines. Make sure your Google business page is set up and work on adding images and getting reviews. This all helpful in raising your site’s ranking on search engines.
  6. Try a Google ad. Thanks to the internet, marketing is so different today than it has been in the past. That isn’t to say that mailers don’t work, but placing a Google AdWords ad can be helpful in building your brand visibility. Start off with a lower budget, see how your conversions go, and build up from there.

Image via Shutterstock

Floral order gatherers do not play fair. There is no way to stop them completely, however, florists do have the upper hand as floral order gatherers need filling florists to make their business possible. Partner up with other real local florists and stand up to the floral order gatherers by educating your consumers. We are not saying that no florist should ever fill a floral order gatherer’s order, but it’s about time that florists get compensated appropriately for their services. Do not hesitate to ask for more money if you are filling a gatherer’s order. Florists, your expertise and resources are needed to keep floral order gatherers in business—remember that.

 

 

Florists, how have floral order gatherers impacted your flower business? Please share your feedback in the comment section below. If you have any questions please post below as well!

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Floranext makes great florist software. Florist websites, floral POS, florist wedding/event proposal software, and florist technology. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.

Captivating Florists to Follow on Instagram

October 25th, 2017 Posted by Blog, Floral Design, Florists for Change, Florists' Thoughts, Flower Trends, photos, Uncategorized 6 thoughts on “Captivating Florists to Follow on Instagram”

With beautiful imagination and bountiful skills, these designers create hypnotizing works of art.

Today we’d like to pay homage to all the amazing floral artists on Instagram for bringing recognition to the floristry industry. It was difficult selecting just a few florists of Instagram to plug, but we encourage you to start following these influential floral designers.

Meta Flora (@metafloranyc)

Image via Instagram by @Metafloranyc

Marisa Competello’s floral designs are more like floral sculptures. Her creations ooze with inspiration and innovation. We love showcasing her designs, and highly recommend you find her on Instagram.

Moonflower Design (@moonflower_design)

Image via Instagram by @moonflower_design

Mandy O’Shea and her husband have made headlines with 3 Porch Farm, their floral design studio in Athens, Georgia, using only the flowers and botanicals they grow. Their designs play with symmetry and texture, creating a forward focus. With over 26.7k followers on Instagram its no wonder @moonflower_design is creating a buzz.

Lewis Miller Designs (@lewismillerdesign)

Image via Instagram by @lewismillerdesign

We raved about floral designer Lewis Miller in our write-up The Art of Flowers. We appreciate florists who continually step outside the box and show the world how to appreciate flowers. Lewis Miller wins for his exceptional floral works of art and allowing us all to see floral arrangements in a whole new way.

Lucy the Flower Hunter (@lucytheflowerhunter)

Image via Instagram by @lucytheflowerhunter

Viewing Lucy the Flower Hunter’s designs is like stepping back in time and traveling into the future. Her modern-vintage floral designs are so magnificent and enchanting.

Kiana Underwood (@tulipinadesign)

Image via Instagram by @tulipinadesign

Kiana Underwood is encouraging many newcomers to join the floral design world on Instagram with her bespoke event floral designs. With over 274K followers she is not one to miss, her beautifully feminine floral masterpieces are sure to inspire.

 

 

Florists, do you have a florist or flower shop that are a must-follow on Instagram? Please share your feedback in the comment section below.

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Floranext offers great florist software, florist POS, florist websites and florist wedding proposal software. Our florist technology products are built by florists, for florists. Let us know if you want a free demo or try our software for free here.