How to Start a Floral Business

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Image of a floral shop

A Quick Overview of The Floral Business

Flowers are always in demand. Weddings, births, anniversaries, birthdays, holidays, and funerals all call for the services of a florist.

You don’t need any formal training to start. In fact, some of the most successful florists in the industry never had any sort of structured education on how to arrange beautiful flowers and bouquets.

The beauty and color of flowers allow us to convey emotional messages perfectly to others. Flowers also spruce up a home or a garden, giving you the opportunity to sell a lot of flowers if you decide to learn how to open.

If you decide to start, you will need to find a great location which will let you showcase your flowers and the arrangements that you can come up with.

You will need to let people know that your arrangements exist and that you will offer them at competitive prices. You need good contacts to get a constant supply of fresh and even rare flowers to keep your customers satisfied.

This venture can be very profitable simply because you have holidays and events all year long that involve flowers.

If you don’t have the funds or desire to open a flower shop, but still like working with floral arrangements and have a creative flair, you have options. You even can work from home!

Skill Set:
  • Develop an appropriate design for the occasion, Bridal Shower, Wedding, Get well, Funeral, Etc.
  • The ability to identify appropriate materials for each season, and Occasion
  • Timing the flower design creation, so flowers stay fresh when displayed
  • Knowledge of all types of flowers
  • Knowledge of the meanings of behind flowers – e.g. a rose is for a romantic occasion
  • Eye for design
  • Flower preservation knowledge and know-how
  • List of Common Business Skills
Employee & Job Consideration During The Start-Up Phase Or In The Future:
Approximate Daily Hours Needed:

Many florists will stay open during normal hours, from about 8:00 a.m. through 5:00 p.m. or a little later.

You will, however, need to go to work early to receive all of the shipments of flowers which will come in early every morning. You will also need time to put arrangements together, meaning that you may have some very early mornings.

Equipment, Supplies, & Services During Start-up OR In The Future:
  • A wide selection of flowers including exotic flowers
  • Flower nutrients
  • Floral Design Tools such as Pruners and Wire Cutters
  • An assortment of baskets
  • An assortment of vases
  • Floral foam
  • Floral foam balls
  • Glue guns & accessories
  • Grapevine
  • Angel hair vine
  • Preserved flowers
  • Wood Strips
  • Wreath making supplies,
  • Frames & forms of various designs
  • Fabric for arrangement decorations
  • Balloons
  • Balloon lights
  • Aquaplus powder
  • Aqua tubes for fresh flowers
  • Storage containers
  • Wrapping paper
  • Floral tape
  • Refrigeration unit
  • A variety of flower ornaments and decorations
  • Ribbons
  • Cards
  • Stuffed animals
  • Statuettes or hanging ornamentation
  • Van or delivery vehicle
  • List of Essential office Equipment
  • See Our List of General Retail Equipment
Monthly Expenses To Consider:

Fresh Flowers & Supplies

Flowers that are unsold and have to be thrown out, this an ongoing monthly expense

List of Common Monthly Expenses

Licenses:

See Our Page on Licenses and Permits

Tip and Considerations:
  • People need floral arrangements for holidays, birthdays, and special events like weddings and graduations, but don’t forget longer-term contracts with churches, hotels, restaurants etc, who need flowers delivered or arranged on a regular basis. Besides a consistent monthly income, it can be a simple way of showcasing your designs to more prospective flower buyers.
  • People purchase flowers and plants as gifts and for their own enjoyment. This growing niche should be considered like any other retail establishment with a perishable product line.
  • There are two ways to become an owner of a floral shop. You could start one from the ground up and build, or you could find one that is for sale and make the purchase. There are valid reasons to go either way. The big plus for buying an existing shop having a an existing customer base. This will mean an immediate cash flow to the new owner. A purchase of an existing shop will cost far more than starting one from scratch. This is the basic reason to start from scratch.
  • If a person is going to open a brand new shop, they will have to pay particular attention to the location of their new store. Drive-by traffic and walking traffic can make a big difference in how fast your shop grows. This type of floral operation would be the typical florist’s shop that you can find in many shopping centers. There are other variations of this type of floral industry that a knowledgeable person could start or buy from a current owner.
  • You could supply businesses with floral arrangements that they want delivered every week. Weekly deliveries that are done on a contracted basis could be in addition to the normal business of the shop.
Pros and Cons:

The Pros:

  • Flowers are beautiful and fragrant, allowing you to spend your day working with beauty.
  • You can also be quite creative in putting together arrangements, expressing your artistic side.
  • It can also be quite a profitable business, as transporting fresh flowers can cost some money and this will reflect in the prices of the flowers that you sell. People know this, though, and are often willing to pay for the best flowers they can buy.

The Cons:

  • When money is tight, flowers are often one of the first things people stop buying.
  • Shipments that are held up for any reason will decrease the quality of the flowers.
  • Also, at certain times, you may have too many orders to process and could lose some business because of this.
  • You have to throw out unsold flowers that are no longer usable
Type of Customers:

People with any special occasion or event is a potential customer

Statistics:

Recent trends indicate that the majority of those who buy flowers buy them for themselves. The American Floral Endowment Consumer Tracking Study conducted in 2000 showed that about 67% buy flowers for themselves, and only 33% buy it as a gift.

Revenue:

The Society of American Florists estimated that the floriculture industry would sell $19 billion in flowers, plants, and floral supplies for 2001. There are about 26,200 retail florist shops in the United States today making an average of $250,191 in annual sales.

Your revenue depends on how big, and busy, your shop is, and the size of your customer base.

Resources:

Related Sites:

The Flower Expert Shop

Equipment and Supplies:

Florabundance

Franchises:

Suspended in Time

Associations:

AIFD

The Flower Expert List of Associations

Books:

Floral Books From Amazon