7 Tips to Think “Outside the Pumpkin” and Increase Floral Sales

Why should you think outside the Halloween pumpkin? As well as the Easter Lillies and Valentine roses?

Because while major floral event sales may keep your doors open, profits are made by increasing everyday sales.

One approach? Promote transitional trends between seasons. Read on for this and six other tips you can use to grow profits between now and the 2017 holidays. As fall arrives, how can you use the look and feel of nature to increase your autumn sales?

Fall and nature are now

Photo: Deb Key Photography

I live in a grove of hardwood trees. Each autumn, I feel like I’m entering a postcard as I wind up the hill of my curving drive. Blazing colors. Leaves falling silently to the ground. A sudden chill in the air.

Experiencing these natural elements always makes me fall in love with autumn again! Bewitched by the season, I suddenly thirst for warm apple cider, stock up on butternut squash and fall pears and pull out a warm woolen sweater to sit by the fire.

What inspires me to take these actions? And how can you inspire your customers to want more of these seasonal products?

Why people buy seasonal items

Photo: Deb Key Photography

 Photo: Deb Key Photography
Industries such as clothing, furniture and grocery stores and farmer’s markets promote the look, feel and fragrance of a season to create the client’s desire for their products.

Photos of family gatherings, seasonal recipes, ‘grab and go’ product displays and emotion-based commercials are all geared toward reminding us how and where we enjoy using the products.

You can use these and similar concepts to promote seasonal merchandise to your customers.

Focus on transitional trends

What are transitional trends? The colors and textures experienced during the transition from one season to another. Think of how clothing fashions change in your area to match the season.

In mid-September, people can be both relishing the final warm days of summer while looking forward to the crispness and colors of autumn. As the last leaves fall, many people look ahead to the clean white of the first frost or snow.

Capture the feelings. Create a connection between the outdoors in your designs and displays indoors to stimulate the customer’s desire to buy new seasonal items.

Consider how you can incorporate elements from more than one season in each of these seven tips:

1. Incorporate seasonal plant material in designs

Photo: Sharon McGukin

Photo: Sharon McGukin

Using plants and cut plant material in our fresh designs is unexpected and catches the eye of the client. This is also a good time to incorporate metals and metallic materials in designs.

Photo: Katie McCormick AIFD, Designer – Leopoldo Gomez

 Photo: Deb Key Photography

What dynamic designs can you create with natural seasonal materials? Consider gourds, pumpkins, and squash; cones, pods, and berries; foliage, grasses, and moss; vines, fruits, and veggies; branches, twigs, and bark. What inspires you or have you noticed inspires your customers?

 Photo: Deb Key Photography

2. Create lifestyle displays 

Build vignettes and displays with seasonal materials to show your customers how to update their look. Replace the faded dusty blue, pink and purple cool-tones of late summer displays with the warm colors of fall. These red, orange and yellow hues add visual energy to your merchandising displays.

 Photo: Deb Key Photography

Foliage, nuts, and mosses make great accessories. Colorful leaves inside a glass vase add visual interest and hide the foam. A casual wildflower look is always a popular fall favorite.

3. Design decorations for doors

Photo: Kevin Allen, photographer. Laura Dowling, designer.

In years past, it was a popular tradition to hang a seasonal wreath on the door every season. Help revive this tasteful trend by offering customers great looking wreaths. You can also ask them to promote the wreaths via social media, posting a photo when they hang your wreath on their door and tagging you.

Photo: Sharon McGukin

Pair door wreaths with window boxes and planters filled with mums, pumpkins, etc., for the entrance of a home.

Photo: Sharon McGukin

4. Fill pumpkins with flowers

Carve a round circle from your pumpkin, creating a removable cap large enough to insert a liner or container to hold a block of wet floral foam standing on one end. Scrape the inside of the pumpkin with a large spoon to remove pulp and seeds. Cut the top of the foam off at about 1 1⁄2” above the top of the pumpkin. Insert floral stems into the foam to create a fresh flower arrangement.

5. Use unexpected colors

 Photo: Deb Key Photography

Create a contemporary look for a traditional style by using non-traditional colors for the season. Use modern touches like these Cinch vases wrapped in sequin wrap, moss or bark wrap or raw jute ribbon. This attracts customers who prefer unique or tradition-with-a-flair designs.

 Photo: Deb Key Photography

6. Customize your candles

Photo: SharonMcGukin

Use candles in floral designs and glass hurricanes or bowls to increase sales. Add decorative accents like naturalsmeshraw muslin or cotton lace to candle holders for a bit of floral flair. Be certain the decorative materials are protected from the flame to avoid the risk of fire.

Photo: SharonMcGukin

7. Feature DIY flower bunches

Offer DIY ‘Buy the Bunch’ specials of mixed bunches or loose stems of fall flowers. For added fun, assign catchy or even ghoulish names to your fall and Halloween collections to grab the attention of party-planning shoppers.

Celebrate seasonal changes

Cool air, crisp colors and a bountiful harvest of textures unfold to create a season as the earth winds down for oncoming winter. Use these seasonal changes to your advantage.

This year, think outside the pumpkin. Create unexpected combinations of color, texture, and form in unique centerpieces and wreaths that captivate your clients through fall into Thanksgiving.

What innovative ideas can you offer your customers for celebrating the changing season?

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