Did you know that the floral gifting market in the United States is expected to grow at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of over 5% during 2020-2025?

While it is not easy to start a floral business, you don’t need much capital to get started. You can start a home-based small business and grow it step by step.

In this article, we’ll help you learn how to start a floral business from scratch.

Here’s How to Start a Floral Business

Let’s take a look at the steps you need to follow to start your own floral business.

1. Understand the Pros and Cons of Being a Florist

First things first, you should evaluate the advantages and challenges of opening a flower shop.

Pros of starting a floral business:

  • You can start a home-based business with a small investment. You will just need a large cooler and water sprays to keep the flowers fresh. You can buy flowers from wholesalers and start a retail or online business.

If you’re opening a flower shop, you’ll need $30,000 to $50,000 to pay for rent, utilities, decoration, and staff.

  • You can bring joy to people’s lives and help make their special occasions more beautiful.
  • You can open a floral shop as well as an online store to help boost your business. You can also start a side business of floral design and event decoration.
  • You can benefit from wire services such as FTD, Teleflora, and BloomNet, which allow you to facilitate orders nationally and internationally for a monthly fee.

Cons of starting a floral business:

  • It’s a competitive industry. It may be tough to compete with already established florists.
  • It can get busy and tiring during peak times such as Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. That can happen with other businesses as well though.
  • Flowers have a short life so you may incur losses if you buy more than you can sell.
  • Becoming a florist will likely require that you work early mornings as that’s when most people shop for flowers. However, selling online can help you streamline the process of marketing, order placement, delivery, and revenue generation.
  • You may need training in flower design and flower arrangement and you will need accounting, bookkeeping, and marketing skills to run your business.

2. Develop the Required Skills

Becoming a florist is not an easy job. You need to develop an understanding of the floral industry, how it works, and standard charges.

You don’t need any specific certificate to run a floral business. However, the American Institute of Floral Designers provides certification and education in this field.

Even if you don’t have a professional certification, you will need to learn and develop:

  • Floral design skills
  • Various design techniques
  • Flower care knowledge. For example, you need to change the water and recut flowers that haven’t been sold within three days.
  • Basic accounting and bookkeeping skills
  • Project management skills
  • Online selling

If you can’t do it all on your own and have the budget, you can hire staff. Many flower businesses hire part-timers to save money without compromising their work.

3. Register Your Business

Regardless of the types of business you start, you will have to pick a business name, choose a business structure, and register your business. This is important to ensure that your business is legally compliant and you are authorized to do business within your state.

As a solopreneur, you can form a Sole Proprietorship or a Limited Liability Company for your floral business. If you’re starting a retail flower business in partnership with one or more people, you can form a Partnership or a Limited Liability Company.

Usually, florists do not incorporate unless they want to start a chain of flower shops. That’s because forming a Corporation requires more details and paperwork.

The entire process of state filing and federal filing can be confusing for new business owners. However, we at GovDocFiling do all of the tedious paperwork for you for a small fee. The best part is that our service packages are more cost-effective than hiring a lawyer.

4. Get the Essentials for Starting a Floral Business

As a florist, you’ll need the following:

  • Sharp clippers for fresh stems
  • Wire clutters for wires, ties, etc.
  • Scissors
  • Flower buckets and vases
  • Refrigerated cases to keep flowers fresh and increase their shelf lives
  • Delivery vehicle and staff. You can also partner with a delivery service if you want to sell flowers in multiple cities.
  • A wholesale source of flowers. You can partner with farm owners and vendors or become part of florist communities.
  • A pricing structure for different flowers, bouquets, vases, and decoration projects. You can easily make a 10%-20% profit if you run your business well.

5. Choose a Location for Your Flower Shop

The location of your flower shop can have a great impact on how many customers you can attract. You should set up your store in an area with high footfall such as areas near temples, cafes, grocery stores, and local area markets.

Along with choosing a good location, you should make sure that your storefront looks enticing to potential customers. You should leverage eye-pleasing floral arrangements to attract customers and compel them to buy flowers.

Also, build a website or set up an online store on Shopify, Etsy, Amazon to accept online orders and payments. You’ll need to hire staff or collaborate with a delivery service provider to deliver those orders.

You can also use wire services such as FTD, Teleflora, and BloomNet to sell flowers globally.

6. Capitalize on Floral Market Trends

The US floral market is going to witness a range of innovations. To make a profit, you should stay relevant to consumer demands and offer high-quality service.

Let’s take a look at a few trends that you can capitalize on to grow your sales.

  • People are more interested in local flowers instead of the extravagant and popular flower choices such as roses. Roses will seldom fall out of trend, though.
  • Focus on floral design as customers can get fresh flowers from anywhere in the market. You can also hire a floral designer to cut flowers and arrange them artistically to attract buyers.
  • Setting up an online store isn’t enough. You should start a florist blog to educate people about the different kinds of flowers, their meanings and significance, and how to keep them fresher for longer.

Doing so can help attract more people from your target market. You may also get an opportunity to partner with wedding planners and event companies for regular flower orders.

7. Market Your Business and Start Earning

Whether you open a brick-and-mortar florist shop or an online store, the most important thing is to get people to buy from you.

You should create an effective marketing plan to attract customers and generate sales.

  • Buy a domain name using GoDaddy or other domain registrars and build a website to take your business online.
  • Start a florist blog.
  • Become a member of the Society of American Florists to get found by the right people, seek legal advice, and get access to florist resources.
  • Advertise your store offline and online using paid ads.
  • Promote your floral design samples, types of flowers, and bouquets on social media. Use social commerce to allow people to place orders from Instagram and Facebook.
  • Offer discounts and subscription packages to encourage repeat orders.
  • Collaborate with event planners and decorators to win more business.
  • Deliver good customer service to get more orders through word-of-mouth marketing.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is owning a flower shop profitable?

Owning a flower shop can be profitable. According to the Society of American Florists, a retail flower shop, on average, generates up to $362K of annual revenue.

2. How do I start a floral business from home?

Starting a floral business from home is easy. You just need to find wholesalers and vendors, set up a storefront in your home, and find ways to keep flowers fresh. You can use a large cooler and water sprinklers to do that.

Either rely on passersby to sell your flowers or set up an online store to get orders. You can also advertise your business in local newspapers, directories, and through pamphlets.

3. How do I start a flower business?

To start a flower business, you should:

  • Understand the pros and cons of being a florist.
  • Develop floral design skills.
  • Create a business plan.
  • Choose a location for your flower shop.
  • Build a website or online store.
  • Register your floral business.
  • Capitalize on market trends.
  • Market your business.
  • Start selling.

4. How do flower businesses make money?

Flower businesses can make money by selling flowers, making flower arrangements for decoration at events and parties, and selling bouquets. You can sell flowers to people, other flower shops, event planners, funeral homes, cafes, and hotels.

5. How much does it cost to start a floral business?

Starting a floral business usually costs between $10K and $50K.

You can start by selling flowers from your own home or from a small rented space. Then, eventually grow it into a full-fledged business.

Are You Ready to Start a Floral Business?

Start your floral business with proper education in floristry and use your creativity to grow it. If you’re not capable of designing bouquets and arranging flowers, you can hire designers to work at your flower shop.

Don’t forget to register your business. Focus on floral design, marketing, driving online sales, and creating regular order sources. The more effort you put into your floral business, the higher your chances of success.

Do you have questions about starting a floral business? Get in touch with our business formation experts to get started.