LocalSYR

Online bouquet services and local florists: The Real Deal

Local florists want consumers to consider using local vendors to order their Valentine’s Day bouquets.
Manlius (WSYR-TV) - Local florists want consumers to consider using local vendors to order their Valentine’s Day bouquets.

Large online services like Pro Flowers or FTD.com will send bouquets through local shops, but the fees end up costing the florists.

Online services – like TeleFlora or 1-800-Flowers - will have local florists like Chick Roeschlaub make your bouquet - but at a price to him.

“Being a member of one of the wire services - they charge us a 20 percent commission on the price of the order – and there's membership fees beyond that,” said Roeschlaub, who owns Whistlestop Florist in Manlius.

If you order a $50 bouquet, you will get $50 worth of flowers. But florists lose up to 28 percent of the profit to the large online sites. If you order from the shops directly, you'll get the same bouquet and the money stays with the small business.

“They're not really buying local. If they were buying local, they'd call a florist in the town where they want their product delivered,” said Roeschlaub.

Roeschlaub's business - Whistlestop Florist- will be delivering more than 300 arrangements on Thursday. A quick stop at the store, a phone call to them or even visiting the local store’s website instead of the large companies, could save local businesses thousands.

According to their websites, companies like Telaflora say they are supporting local florists by partnering with small businesses instead of flower warehouses.

Teleflora initiated the campaign "Save the Florists" to raise awareness about sites that do not use local florists. For more information, visit the campaign site.

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