The big day is finally here! For floral professionals, Valentine’s Day can be responsible for a bulk of revenue in the first quarter of the year. With over 110 million roses being purchased, and $18.2 billion projected to be spent this year, it’s to position your business for optimal success during this lucrative time. And although that sum seems overwhelming, it is 7.6% less than was spent for Valentine’s Day in 2016, proving how vital it is to understand evolving customer behaviors in order to drive more returns.
Guide them with pre-made arrangements and gift sets
As for today’s last-minute shoppers, the key is to make things as easy as possible for them. Set up different giftsets or bundles that they can easily choose between, without having to wait for the flowers to be arranged and wrapped. Dig into your records from previous years to see which sorts of arrangements are most popular, (i.e. a dozen long-stemmed roses) and make some extras wrapped and ready to go, accordingly.
Beyond that, it’s important to vary these arrangements in flower type, bows and wrapping, and additional items such as balloons, chocolate, etc. Reports indicate that consumers are looking to vary their gift-giving this year, in terms of both flower type and other gifts, so by anticipating their needs, your customers will be delighted and appreciate your business even more!
You can help promote other local businesses by including candy, champagne, wine, and chocolates from a nearby shop, or even gift certificates for restaurants or coffeeshops in the area. Clearly listing what’s included in each basket or arrangement will help accelerate their decision-making process and keep in-store traffic flowing, to avoid overcrowding.
Reorganize store and purchase flows to make things easier and hassle-free
Try designating an area away from the registers and other floral displays, for prepaid pickups. If you’re concerned about leaving this self-service area unattended, try arming an associate with a tablet, to mark orders as claimed and verify they’re taking the correct arrangement. This is even more efficient if the associate can accept credit card transactions on the tablet, for those picking up who haven’t prepaid.
You can also also create a fast lane for express check out, for those who are purchasing pre-made bundles. This helps avoid waiting around for those who want a custom order that needs to be cut, arranged, and wrapped. Most importantly, if you do try this approach, make sure the different registers/lanes are clearly marked accordingly. Otherwise, you run the risk of the system breaking down, and causing unnecessary frustration (along with the appearance of disorganization or lack of preparation) among customers. So whether you designate the special cases with signage, or task someone with checking in with customers waiting on line to ensure they’re in the right place, don’t forget to get ahead of this potential snafu on an otherwise well-planned and executed strategy.
For more tips and prep for Valentine’s Day, download our full Valentine’s Day Cheatsheet for Florists, which provides a complete checklist of comprehensive email, SMS and promotion strategies.