Real Local Florist is Best Again

It’s that time of year when holiday test order stories appear. This one is about Mother’s Day Flowers. . One such television news story that was shown in the Washington, D.C. market gives a strong thumbs up for real local florists.

NBC affiliate consumer reporter Liz Crenshaw put spring bouquets to the test to determine if they’re (in her words) “beautiful buds or duds.” The reporter purchased five spring bouquets from ProFlowers, 1-800-Flowers.com, Organic Bouquet, F T D and one randomly picked real local florist, Greenworks.

She ran the flower test at Ballston Common Mall in Arlington, VA., where shoppers were asked to choose their favorite arrangement (they were labeled only by “a” through “e”). A total of 35 shoppers judged the five designs on two factors:  which one they liked most and which they would send to their mothers.

“The bouquet with the most appeal, the clear crowd-pleaser,” Crenshaw says, was the Washington, D.C.-based florist’s $58 arrangement. The bouquet received 19 votes, and the shoppers liked the Greenworks creation because it was the most colorful and because of its simplicity and shape.

F T D’s $56 bouquet followed with less than half at eight votes, then 1-800-Flowers’ $47 bouquet with 5 votes, Organic Bouquet’s $66 bouquet with 2 votes and ProFlowers’ $54 bouquet received one vote. The sum total of the order brokers/gatherers did not even equal the votes cast for the real florist….18 to 16 for all of the bad guys combined.

During the past few years, there have been many “test order” reports during flower holidays where reporters pose as consumers ordering flowers and do a story picturing the flowers they received, along with details on price and how their order was handled (attitude of salespeople, accuracy of message card, timeliness of delivery, etc.).  Real florists always show up much better than the companies with web sites and an office but no inventory of flowers.

But the real question is why?   Real florists stock real flowers, employ really skilled designers who make real bouquets,  and they make real deliveries of flowers and gifts.  The huge order gatherers like 1800, Teleflora and F T D offer none of these features. They all have an automatic web site and call centers that pass the order to a third party (a totally different company) for fulfilment immediately with no human intervention.  For this, they charge a service fee of $12.95 to $14.95 and retain about 30% of the order value.  The party filling the order gets the remaining 70%.

This means that the big office guys are totally uneccesary and contribute zero to the process. In fact they gouge the public so they actually add a big minus to the equation.  What a money machine………no inventory of any kind and make about $30 plus per order.  Talk about a license to steal!

But when will the public catch on?   When will they learn not order on the big boys web sites? When will they learn not to succumb to their slick advertising?    False and misleading advertising because most of the public think they actually deliver the goods!!

Even a fifth grader would know how to find a real local florist in less than 10 seconds! Just Google one! Type ” Florist City State/Prov”   So simple………..Add country if you like.  Google will save you money and you will get a much better bouquet.  Why deal with a third party broker who has no flowers, no designers, and no delivery vans?  Deal direct with a real local florist………you will be glad you did now that you know the truth.