Starting a Floral business

Over the last 20 years teaching floristry I have shared the journey with an amazing group of students, some of whom have gone on to open their own flower shops, build their own wedding florist business, or start their freelance floral career.
These students have come from a variety of backgrounds and with very different creative styles.  They have followed their hearts and made flowers their world.

So how did these creative florists successfully start their flower businesses?  

Much is down to hard work, passion, and drive to offer a quality service to their clients.  But it was also important for them to think of themselves as a small businesspeople and work to build strong foundations. They had a vision and planned for success. They were organised, built a great support team, and now run professional operations. And they have managed to balance their love for what they do with the need to make a profit.  

So how do you start a floral business?  

Having watched their journeys it seems me that they have followed these fundamental steps when starting their Floral Businesses.
1. Follow your heart …. Become a Florist

There is a lot more to floristry than simply creating beautiful bouquets. To be a florist you need to be the flower expert, have strong under-pinning knowledge of design and of your customer.
Building your creative skills and knowledge to empower you to work as a Florist – that’s where Pearsons and our SFL30115 Certificate III in Floristry program are essential. Certificate III covers the essentials to start your florist career including:
  • Flowers: their use in design and professional care.
  • Design: flower styling, colour, sketching and photography
  • Floristry Techniques: Creating floral designs for use in retail floristry, gifting, weddings, funerals, and special events.
  • Working in floristry: We treat the classroom as a florist studio. Each design has a customer and occasion in mind.
While Certificate III does not cover small business skills, you will get a strong understanding of our very creative industry and be set up to start working as a florist and begin your floral career.
  1. Get experience with other successful floral businesses 
One thing all these florists have in common is their commitment to learn from both Pearsons and other successful floral designers. Many successful florists will work in the industry for at least a year before they open their own businesses learning what it takes to make a florist business work. Through the Pearsons network three were many opportunities to complete WORK EXPERIENCE and we often get other florists advertising jobs with us.
  1. Have a vision for success based on your strengths

Ask yourself …. “Why should people buy from my floral Business” and then shout it from the rooftops.

As a new florist you may not have the experience (yet) but you can offer:

  • Your style
  • Your commitment
  • The price is right
  • Your passion

At Pearsons we have build our brand on quality service and product. We only choose to do things that fit with our brand and our strengths which are floral deliveries, gifting, and floral merchandising through our stores. We have been leaders in these things for over 50 years. We work hard on providing exceptional quality and service. We do 200 hundred or more deliveries each day. It’s our thing and we do it really well.

Other florists focus strongly on Wedding Flowers or high-end Corporate Events Flowers. They have strong creative skills and build their businesses on those creative relationships. Here I am thinking of florists like Grandiflora, John Emmanuel, or Hermetica. Flowers Vasette in Melbourne.

 4.   Plan for a profitable floral business

Take your clear vision and plan for success. It is important to develop a Business Plan to ensure your hard work and passion make you a good living.
For example, if you are looking to set up a home-based wedding flower studio you could start by asking this simple question.  “How many weddings do you need to do each week, month, year to make a pay yourself a wage?”  
To answer this, you will need to know how much profit you will need to make on each wedding? How much you need to charge for the wedding?
Do your research. Ask yourself who is your ideal customer? How can you communicate to them? What do they want from a florist?
Then Build your portfolio and your social presence to match your clients.
  1. Get organised and Build good systems
  •  Set up your workspace planning for success
  • Know how people will contact you, order through you and pay you
  • Develop Price guides, customer templates to answer common client questions
  • How will you do your deliveries?
  • Where will you source your flowers, your wrapping, your vases?
  • How will you do your accounts?
  • Register your business, get insurance and other legal requirements
  • Set up Terms and Conditions
  • Set up separate bank accounts
  • Manage your time so you do not burn out  
  1. Generate Buzz  
Network; set up your website; post on daily on Instagram
Invest in good photography to showcase your work and style.
Ask for support from family, friends and other related industries like wedding photographers.
  1. A successful florist business is all about relationships
No florist is an island!  To make a success of your floral career you will need the support of your clients, your team, other florists, flower growers, with your support base …. family, business advisors, wedding vendors and other local businesses.  Allocate time to network in your local community and ask for help when you need it.
  1. Create beautiful things and run your florist business as a business

Your passion, creativity and hard work can be transformed into a successful and profitable business. Know what your strengths are and develop your signature style. Charge your customers for your time, experience, service as well as product.