or How an Online Presence Can Complement the Artistic Nature of Your Business
Our warm greetings to the community of Boston florists!
Following our mission to empower local businesses in the New England area, we have been working on developing affordable, efficient, and relevant digital tools specifically geared for floral businesses like yours, and and it’s our delight to share with you our vision of how to be efficient on the floral market.
As we have looked at the floral industry in Boston and beyond, it’s a mystery to us how you are surviving running a store, receiving orders, creating beautiful arrangements, delivering on time and… competing with a huge number of other florists who are as artistic and passionate about the floral craft as you are! How do you do it? On Yelp alone, there are more than 1000 floral stores under the search request “florist near Boston, MA.” Google Map shows around 30 stores just within the Downtown Boston area! With such fierce competition, it’s very easy to get lost unless you have a strong voice and presence in the places where people are looking for floral services—namely, online.
Picture # 1: Floral Shops in Boston, MA. Google Maps.
Google Survey The Smart Shopper reveals that 57% of American consumers at the age of 25 – 54 now turn to the Internet, either desktop or mobile, to discover products to purchase—and this includes flowers, floral shops and flower delivery options. The data on Picture #2 from Google Trends demonstrates people’s demand in flowers within last 12 months. Those peaks on trends are the most popular seasons of your business. If your store does not show up anywhere in the Internet when people are looking for bouquets or floral arrangements, most likely you will not be as busy as those who are online during St. Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day week, or any other week, for that matter.
Picture #2: Google Trends, June 2016: Search for Flower, Flowers, Flower Delivery, and Flower Shop.
However, just being on Google Maps, Yelp, Facebook, BloomNation or other florist networks is not enough. Your business – the floral craft – is all about being unique and artistic. Customers return to your shop largely because they like the designs of your floral arrangements, they value the quality of flowers, and they appreciate the service you provide in the store. To reward your loyal customers, as well as to simplify the search for a flower shop for those who do not know you, it is crucial to develop a unique presence online which will reflect your talent, style, and skills. To understand why, let’s try to put ourselves in the shoes of hypothetical customer, Martin, who is looking for a flower shop to order an arrangement for his fiancé.
Next weekend, Martin and his fiancé will celebrate their anniversary. He wants to surprise her with a really nice and special bouquet while she is at the office on Newbury Street. He Googles “flower delivery in Boston,” skips the big floral networks and finds a few links which seem to belong to local floral shops. Then he clicks on four different stores, and here is what he sees:
He looks at the pictures, he surfs through the websites and he can’t pick any of them. To him, they all look the same! He checks Yelp for reviews and finds that all stores he has found on Google have five stars and really great reviews! How can he choose a store and be sure that his fiancé will get a really beautiful, nice and unique bouquet? Most likely at this point, Martin will pick a florist based on price or store proximity.
But what if during his search Martin discovers a website with a different layout, structure, and message? Will he pick this store and stop searching? We believe yes, especially if the whole story, voice, and design of the website matches his expectations. The results of The Smart Shopper confirm this behavior: as Picture #3 demonstrates, up to 27% of American consumers mention a brand website as an online source they use to make a purchase decision.
Picture #3: Consumer Barometer, USA, July 2016.
As you can see, when you’re running a floral business, simply being online is not enough. You need to develop a strong, unique, and distinctive online presence. This will make you visible and competitive, as well as provide you with invaluable information about Boston consumers. You can then use this information to build a stronger bond with your loyal customers and target new customers who will most likely pick you as a florist.
At Pantoo, we have crafted some unique website solutions specifically designed for floral businesses, and we can customize these solutions to help you find your distinctive online voice. If you’re interested in learning more, we’d love to speak with you and answer any questions you may have. Simply reach out to us via the contact information below.
Our best wishes,
The Pantoo Team