Ordering By Phone Versus Ordering Online

When confronted by the necessity of ordering flowers for an out of town recipient, you may find yourself debating the wisdom of ordering online versus calling a local florist. On the one hand, a local florist will be able to offer personalized advice and create a custom bouquet. On the other hand, you will not be able to see the flowers, compare reviews, or effectively price shop before sending the flower arrangement. We have provided some criteria to help you decide if purchasing from a local florist fits your situation.

1. You know someone in town who can recommend a good florist.

If you have a knowledgeable contact, such as a friend who has purchased flowers locally, listen to their recommendation. If s/he gives a particular florist a positive review, make a note of the florist's name and the bouquet your friend ordered. It is important to note the type of bouquet because some florists specialize in certain types of arrangement or especially fresh varieties of certain flowers. If your contact had a positive experience with a specific bouquet, it is worth trying to figure out whether it was due to a wonderful florist or due to your friend picking the one bouquet type at which the florist excels.

Run an Internet search on the florist and see if you can find reviews and images of their flowers. If the florist seems reputable and appears to produce good work, call them and get a quote for the bouquet you wish to order. Remember to ask about delivery arrangements and fees and factor those into the final cost. Go back to the Internet and see how much a similar bouquet would cost online, including postage. If the local florist seems to be a good value for the price, go ahead and order.

2. You are determined to buy local.

Buying local and supporting small businesses are hot trends, but they are not always the most appropriate solution. If you followed the instructions for following up on your local contact's recommendations and successfully located an excellent florist, feel free to use them for all floral occasions.

If the florist is hit or miss, specializes in only certain types of flower or bouquet, or does not post images on the Internet so you can see what you are buying, consider a test run. Order a bouquet for an informal occasion and have it sent to someone local who can report on the quality or photograph it for you. If the bouquet meets your standards, you can order from the florist for more formal occasions. While this may seem like overkill, consider how embarrassing it would be to send a seriously subpar bouquet to a significant other or for a formal occasion. Do not just trust that because you are ordering flowers for a solemn or important occasion, the florist will automatically put in more effort to produce a worthy bouquet.

3. You have found a website or online review site for the local florist.

If you have a florist's name and recommended type of bouquet, run an Internet search on the business and arrangement. In the best case scenario, the florist will either have a website or an online image gallery. This will allow you to see their work and determine if they seem like a quality establishment. If you cannot find a website, look for local reviews. See how the local community feels about the florist.

If you do not know of any local florists, try using an online search by postal code or town name. Look for florists with online reviews, websites, and image galleries and base your decision off of those.

Remember that blindly ordering via the phone book is no longer your only option. If the local florist does not meet your standards, simply order online. If you are going to spend your money and invest your business in a florist, they should produce a quality bouquet.