One of the greatest assets we have as an industry is our powerful and efficient ability to hand-deliver our products the same day they are ordered. FedEx isn’t even that fast! But as a whole, we need to do a better job at making a commitment to our industry and helping each other out.
Simply put, we need each other. When we can’t work together, we all suffer. With more and more competition in the marketplace, we need better cooperation between local florists.
If you tried sending orders out of town for Mother’s Day, you may have found that many shops would simply refuse to deliver an order without any sort of alternative option because it was too late, or the delivery area was too far away, etc. Some shops even closed for a few days afterwards and refused to field any questions or complaints that customers had with their orders. It’s hard to imagine a store like Target shutting its doors for several days after Christmas and ignoring all the anticipated exchanges and returns that are always a part of the season.
These are the types of things that are detrimental to our industry. We want our customers to “shop local,” but without a strong commitment to our industry from dedicated florists, we continue to push our customers away from local shops and into the open arms of the online giants who ship their flowers in a box.
It is certainly understandable to be busy during holidays and you may be at a point where you can’t possibly do any more deliveries, but instead of turning down the rest of the orders that you receive, why not offer the opportunity to use a courier service as an alternative for after-hours or far-away deliveries? That way instead of saying “no” to new orders, you can let them know the price it will cost to complete the job. There is a price to make it happen, everything has a price.
Our customers want to send flowers, and one way or another – the job will get done. It’s time to ask ourselves if we are going to be the ones to do the job, or are we going to let our customers look elsewhere?