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Planning essential to increase sales and profits for Valentine’s Day

The calendar is turning and the clock is ticking — Valentine’s Day is just a few weeks away. According to the Society of American Florists, it is the most important floral holiday of the year. It accounts for 36 percent of all holiday floral transactions and moe than 40 percent of total holiday dollars for the year.

A profitable Valentine’s Day influences a floral department’s annual success.

Therefore, it requires careful planning. Floral center managers need custom-tailored strategies and methods of planning, depending on their particular situations. There is no one-size-fits-all playbook for all floral departments. However, there are some basic universal strategies that need to be considered.

Expect higher sales this year because Feb. 14 lands on a Friday, which is the best day of the week for this romantic holiday. Research indicates that people are more likely to have flowers delivered to the work place. Stores that do deliveries are wise to plan for an increased number of deliveries this year.

It has been said repeatedly, and research confirms, that the biggest objection consumers have to buying flowers is their belief that flowers just don’t last. Floral centers should be committed to purchasing high-quality products that have been handled properly. This will result in satisfied customers and that should translate into repeat customers.

Valentine’s Day business extends beyond the floral center — it is really a whole-store event. The influx of holiday customers provides a great opportunity for cross-merchandising promotions. Setting up floral displays around the store also draws customers into other departments to shop.

Expect the unexpected. The logistics surrounding Valentine’s Day are staggering. With more than 196 million roses grown for the holiday, and countless other flowers and plants being shipped through the normal supply chain, delays and problems often occur. Weather in February is very unpredictable and in the past storms have shut down large sections of the country during Valentine’s Day shipping. This is a holiday where you need to have a Plan B.

Just remember that pre-planning is a vital necessity and whole-store planning is essential to increase sales and profitability this Valentine’s Day.