It’s not current news that supermarkets have entered the trade of floral pedaling and plan to stay for the long haul. Almost every Stop and Shop you visit has set up a flower counter where bunches of roses, pom-poms and gerberas are readily available to add quickly to your cart. For many customers, this is a bonus during their experience of stocking up on Campbell’s soup and toilet paper because on the service it looks like a great deal, but is it? Are you getting the quality of flowers you deserve and has the product been pre-conditioned before placed into buckets of water? These are only a couple of questions professional florists have posed to grocery stores who compete to sell the same inventory as retail locations but is it really the same product to begin with? By taking a look at some facts about the industry, we can get a better answer to the question, “Are you really getting a deal buying super market flowers?”
Well, let’s take a look at the benefits first and start with the obvious; “THEY’RE CHEAP!” In most cases, yes, bouquets bought at these food outlets will typically cost much less than those designed by a reputable florist. The number #1 explanation is because they are using product of lesser quality so profit can be made at a much lesser price. In some cases, the product is even being purchased “on spec” meaning whatever isn’t sold at the end of the day is returned and thrown out by the supplier. The other reason is due to the fact that arrangements created by designers working in flower shops have been trained with trade education as opposed to their competitor who might have a person behind the counter who has little to no knowledge about the floral biz. When this happens, there is likely to be an inferiority regarding the item being sold on the shelves and god forbid you have a question about the blooms or how to care for them when they leave the store.
So, you see, the benefits aren’t really benefits at all unless you want to focus on the convenience factor. Yes, it will be easier to grab and go while snatching a carton of milk but don’t be surprised if you have buyers regret. Statistics show, grocery bought flowers have half the life expectancy as a sample taken from an established florist and can even sometimes be damaged without the customer knowing. Keep a keen eye on foliage that has been stripped to the head of the bloom which is another clear indicator the product is old. Also, be weary of bruised and ripped petals that may be located towards the bottom of the stem. Colored packaging material attempts to camouflage this problem, don’t be fooled! Ask to always have the blooms you’ve chosen to be wrapped in front of you.
Okay, it’s time to talk truth about what your florist can deliver which Stop and Shop can’t. First off, professional florists have superior knowledge about everything having to do with flowers because this is the single area in which they specialize. Ask them a question and I guarantee they’ll be able to find the answer quickly and efficiently. Point #2, they want to keep you coming back for more so they’ll do whatever it takes to assure you consistent quality every time you step through their door. Grocery store clientele tends to change considerably with a huge turnover when compared to flower shops who work hard to please their customer basis for years to come. The last but not least final clue is that even though you might be spending more, you will notice the clear difference right away in the bundles you bring home which will increase your customer satisfaction in the long run. The next time you are torn between the mega store cheap buy, think about these factors that will affect the outcome of your experience and choose to support local, small business florists instead.