There's something so wonderful about sending (and receiving!) flowers. It's a timeless gift that feels classy, kind, and adds a bit of beauty to your day. But there is one caveat. The process still feels very old school. Either you have to search endlessly to find a good local florist (who also delivers!) or order from a mass-market service that often sends flowers that don't feel high-quality or particularly unique. Lana Elie, founder of Floom, hopes to change that.
The modern delivery service not only offers up beautiful blooms with same-day delivery, but it sources its flowers direct from local florists. That means the bouquet you order can come direct from an artisan who puts care and creativity into their designs. Plus it gives business to florists big and small, from well known designers like Eric Buterbaughto smaller shops like Flowerboy Project.
Floom now helps folks order beautiful arrangements in NYC, L.A., and even London. To get some insight, we asked Elie to share her inspiration behind the cool company and why the flower industry is in need of some innovation. Read ahead to get a deeper look.
What inspired you to first get into the floral business?
Lana Elie: I have been passionate about flowers for a long time, and held the belief that the flower industry needed a shake up. Archaic processes and legacy technologies get me really excited about what could be if better products and user experiences existed - that's what motivated me to go off and explore Floom.
How did you come up with the idea for Floom?
LE: I had spent so many wasted hours looking for florists when I sent flowers in the past (both personally and professionally), and most of the great ones are still unknown to most. I wanted to build something that simplified this discovery and purchasing process, but without just building an online flower delivery website, I knew it needed to be built around these independents and their skills, incorporate content and story telling, but also be seamless to use for both customer and florist.
Why is it important for you to sell designs from local florists?
LE: Local florists offer an unmatched freshness and uniqueness in their bouquets, especially in comparison to many other online flower delivery companies. We have the best bouquets, from the best local florists — which are constantly changing their offerings, keeping the customer experience fresh, and supporting the seasonality of their local areas.
We feel passionately about supporting local independents, and try to educate consumers why they should as well. Being able to provide things like florist stories and a sort of ‘behind the scenes’ aspect is one of the ways we do this. After all, 84% of flower customers say they prefer receiving an arranged bunch by an independent — we're here to provide florists with the tools to do just that.
How do you curate which florists to work with?
LE: As a company, we understand that floristry is no different from any other creative industry. We want our florists to have their own identity, flair and uniqueness, as well as be passionate about using only the best seasonal flowers, foliage and plants.
When it comes to discovering new florists, we make use of being one of the leading florist communities in the industry — as we are lucky enough to have florists that support one another, allowing us to receive fantastic recommendations from within the industry when we expand into new markets.
Additionally, we receive numerous messages and applications through our Instagram page and website from interested florists — from which we then look at their style, skill, and even packaging! All those factors, once perfected, form a Floom florist partner.
How do you hope to see Floom grow?
LE: Today we give florists the tools to create and deliver beautifully crafted bouquets to our online communities. They’re hand-made and hand-delivered with the Floom seal of approval. Florists receive a backend management tool, and customers receive more options, in more areas, by vetted florists, with the ultimate convenience of a seamless check-out and what everyone really wants - confirmation of safe receipt in their loved one’s hands.
In the next 12 months, our online offering will grow as we launch in 10 new cities across the U.K. and U.S., and introduce the very first vertically integrated florists management software. From inventory management, to a wholesale shop, and even website builders and POS systems. We will offer florists everything they need, ultimately allowing customers to get exactly what they ordered in the picture, on the very same day.