If you are a frequent patron of flower delivery services in Singapore, you will know that there are a huge number of flower shops in Singapore. Most of these flower shops offer a wide range of products from flower bouquets to vase arrangements and the more sophisticated corporate arrangements.
For as far as I can remember, buying flowers was much like buying real estate, you will like to know what you are getting before committing to buy the product. Many of the seasoned flower buyers do that because they know that flower arrangements and designs to vary from day to day due to the lack of the exact material or even the slight difference in colour of flowers from each season.
For example, no two hydrangeas are the same so you may want to be sure to see the exact hydrangea bouquet that you are purchasing before you actually fork out the cash for it. This is especially important if it is a gift to an important client. You do not want to botch a lucrative corporate relationship up just because you have not been checking on what the florist has sent to him or her.
On a more personal level, some clients may want to write handwritten notes for their loved ones which makes this all the more important for them to go down personally to the flower shop to make their purchases.
Changing Consumer habits
Truth be told, gifting has become a much less personal affair. How many gifts these days have a handwritten note tied to it? Our guess is increasingly little. These days it is rare enough if people will even have a typed out message note for you, much less a hand written one.
Further, the high penetration rate of mobile devices as well as the use of mobile apps even amongst the older generation of Singaporeans meant that there is a large shift in the way people buy things. No longer do people buy according to the real product that they see with their two eyes. Rather, nowadays people buy base on online reviews from people they do not know as well as from photos which have been uploaded.
Why Local flower shops need to keep up
Ecommerce is here to stay and there is no way you can avoid it. For a flower shop, avoiding e commerce can be a matter of life and death as most of their clients shift into the virtual market place to buy their flowers. There is good reason for that as the virtual world provides not just a greater range of products but also at a great convenience.
Due to this, local shops need to get into the e commerce industry by setting up their own websites or using selling platforms like Carousell, instagram, facebook and other online platforms. The benefit of having these platforms is that you do not need to set up your own website. However, your online business will then be held ransom to the changes by the managements who own this platform.
One interesting side effect of ecommerce is that a client can now see the offerings from any where in Korea to China to the United States. In the old days, they will only see what local shops have to offer and are thus slow to catch on to international trends. However, all these changed with the shrinking of global distances as a result of the internet.
As a result, client’s taste and preferences have been changing rapidly and it is important for us to keep ourselves updated to these latest trends. This will then allow us to make the most beautiful designs that clients will want to buy.
Remembering the reason why we buy gifts
It is easy to set up these platforms. However, it is important to maintain the sentimental value of buying gifts even while we go high tech. Flower shops should allow clients to write messages for their loved ones. In other words, making gifting more convenient should not lead to the commodification of gifting.
Flower shops can only thrive if they can give clients what they want. However, it is also the flower shops job to foresee the different aspects of client’s needs. This may mean keeping up with the times and modernising offerings or retaining sentimental values that makes gifting meaningful. Business is about the dollar and cents but it is also about providing value for our dear clients.