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Surge in sales

Florist blooms as lockdown sees a lift in giving gifts

Gift: Ellie Orton, CEO of NHS Charities Together

Online florist Flowercard has reported a threefold surge in sales as customers have sought ways of connecting with each other in the absence of physical interaction.

Consumers unable to meet partners, friends and relatives have resorted to floral gifts as a way of staying in touch.

Since taking over the business on 17 March last year, just before the first national lockdown, Stephen Gorman has seen the brand’s turnover bloom from £2.3m in 2019 to £7m. 

The company, which currently employs 12 staff, saw gifting outside of traditional occasions like Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day grow by 236% compared to 2019.

There were other causes for celebration in the first year of the pandemic with ‘Congratulations’ messages on the personalised products up a staggering 1,377%. 

Stephen Gorman: platform for growth

New home, birthday, new baby, engagement and thank you messages all saw sales increases of more than 100% and in some cases by more than 500%.

Mr Gorman, said: “When I made the decision to buy Flowercard, I couldn’t have known how unusual a time it would be to take over a new business in a new industry.

“Thankfully, the pre-purchase growth forecasts for the business were built on solid consumer insights that confirmed people need convenient but thoughtful ways to connect with each other.

“We’ve seen a significant rise in messages like ‘miss you’, ‘love you’ and ‘thinking of you’, and it seems people are reverting back to more traditional means of gift giving to check in on loved ones –  with the added personal touch meaning even more during these unprecedented times.

“The traditional gifting dates have seen a significant lift over the past 12 months, and while sending flowers has always had a meaning, now it’s even more important, particularly for those of us with far-flung family and friends.

“The ability to send a ‘floral hug’ when real ones have been in short supply is very resonant.”

He said Flowercard is not resting on its laurels and has big plans in the pipeline for later this year. This will include doubling head-count.

“2020 was a difficult year to adapt to new ways of working, but it has ultimately provided us with a solid platform for further growth in 2021,” he said.

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