Buying Flowers Online – Clearing the Fog

When searching for flowers online, you can be inundated with a number of options.  There are a host of wire services, 1-800 numbers, order forwarding companies and if you can believe it, ACTUAL FLORISTS!

Please click the link below and see the search results from Google for “Buy Flowers Online”.

Google Search: Buy Flowers Online

What you will notice in the is that the top organic results (Google Search Engine Results) that come up are for companies like Teleflora, Canadaflowers.com, FTD or 1800Flowers.  All of which are wire services and order forwarding companies.  You will also notice the same trend in the Sponsored Results that are provided by Google Adwords.

There are several things to think about when ordering flowers online:

What price do you want to pay?
Are you going to get what you paid for?
What kind of deal are you actually getting?

What Price Do You Want to Pay?

The very first thing you should consider when deciding to order flowers online is what price you are willing to pay.  A lot of people are shocked when they go online and find that flowers are really not cheap!  When considering flowers as a gift, it is important to realize some things about the flower business.  Most flowers come from a great distance before they actually reach the providers.  There can be a great deal of waste during the arrangement process; Stems break, petals fall, products can become moldy.  So you are not really paying just for one flower, but likely for several, plus the time to arrange it.  Be prepared to spend a minimum of $40 plus delivery when ordering online.

One way of getting a great value for your dollar is to deal with an actual florist, rather than a wire service or 1-800 number to be sure you are getting what you paid for.

Are You Getting What You Paid For?

Most of the wire services and 1-800 numbers have canned web sites that served several hundred or even thousands of florists world-wide.  The odds that the “Beautiful Bouquet” arrangement that you saw and loved on the web site, that comes in a fancy red vase with a gold embossed bow, isn’t available in some or most of the flower shops that the web site serves.  There is always a disclaimer somewhere on the web site or on the order completion page that states that “the florist reserves the right to substitution, based on product availability”.  It is certainly difficult to avoid this in most cases, and in the florists defence, it is difficult to stock quality flowers of all types at all times.  Weather, shipping, wholesale availability and several other factors affect the product availability.

Dealing directly with the florist you choose is the best way to insure that you are getting what you have paid for.

What Kind of Deal Are You Actually Getting?

When shopping in the retail brick and mortar markets, most people with search for deals before making a purchase, online floral purchases are no exception.  As I stated above, there are many, many options for buying flowers online.  Think of those big box stores you go to; The ones that claim “wholesale direct”.  You are definitely going to get a better deal going directly to the wholesaler, rather than purchasing from another middle man.  If you ever visit a Costco store, you will see small business owners buying their chocolate bars, soft drinks, bottled water and a plethora of other things at the till.  They then proceed to take that back to their stores and put a huge mark up on it before placing it on their shelves.  I can buy a chocolate bar for less than 40 cents at Costco, but at the corner store it’s $1.25.  The same principal applies to online floral purchases.  Why would you want to buy from the middle man and pay them to place an order with an actual florist!  You don’t even need a membership.

The point is, that when buying online, going direct to a local florist is definitely the way to go.  This eliminates cost and also puts you in control of what you are actually getting.

In Conclusion:

The moral of the story here, is that it is ALWAYs BEST to seek out an actual local florist, and deal with them yourselves, rather than one of the thousands of wire services and order forwarders.  You will save money, and definitely be provided with a better product and better service.

Happy flower shopping!

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