Many florists are growing frustrated filling wire-in orders. Most of us would be happy to fill an open order for $40 today if it did not have specifics attached.
It wasn’t long ago that a $40 order was just that, a fresh arrangement for $40. It allowed us to clean out our coolers, deliver the budget request, and accomplish moving product that was left over.
This was what made the wire service a wonderful tool. This was why everyone wanted wire orders. Remember the “make it nice” bouquet? When a customer said, “I don’t know what I want…how about $40?” Then you said “sure” and they said, “Make it nice!” That was it, it was simple.
The internet changed our industry forever
What has changed today is the availability of images to everyone (the sender and the recipient). Consumers are smarter now and have more resources available than ever before, so expectations are higher. We need to change with times. It’s not hard, but it does take some planning.
1) Our industry must change how we send out orders. For example, if you have a buy-one-get-one special for Gerbera daisies, you know you can’t expect this out of town. So when a customer asks for an item for out of town delivery, be sure to charge accordingly.
2) Show them mixed and easy-to-create ideas for under $50 and include a clause, “Items may differ based on availability.” Now when they see that bouquet for $39.95 and tell you they want that exactly…or else, you step back and assure them it will be as close as possible.
3) We need to agree as an industry that out-of-town orders under $50 will have second choices as similar as possible or mixed seasonal. This will make receiving wire-in’s more favorable again with hopes of cleaning out the cooler and giving the customers better value.
Align the expectation
The ideal custom items to offer for out-of-town delivery are typically orders that start at $50 or $60 each using products that are easily available. Remember, you always have a better chance of getting what you want at $60 and up rather than at $39.95.
If the customer wants to specify flowers, be ready. Advise them that this custom request will cost extra – and then make it happen.
Never allow the customer to dictate what they will spend for the flowers they have selected. It’s your job as a professional to explain the difference. After all, this is why they are shopping with you – they are asking for your services. It’s your job to be clear and not to overpromise and under-deliver.