Are convenience store flower sales hurting local florists?

Blooming Crazy in Boardman said it's able to compete with gas stations' and grocery stores' grab-and-go service

Blooming Crazy, Youngstown


YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – If you waited until the last minute to get flowers for your special someone, convenience and grocery stores are still selling them. But is that convenience hurting local florists who may not offer grab-and-go service?

As you’d expect, the new concept of flower shopping is hurting the industry, but not for all florists.

Business is booming for Blooming Crazy in Boardman. While the front of the store is neatly organized with flowers on full display, the back is a different story. There are flowers on the go, people on the go and countless displays in the works.

“We’re doing really well,” said store manager Ann Marie Velcheck.

That’s not the case for all florists, though. Velcheck said there are fewer in the area than there used to be.

Grocery stores and gas stations are selling flowers and while that offers convenience, Velcheck said many customers want more.

“If you want six of this, three of this, two of that, we’ll do that. Not all the other stores and supermarkets can do that. And it’s prettier!”

She said Blooming Crazy prides itself in its quality of work, personalization and brand — it’s a flower store first.

Blooming Crazy does sell non-flower items, but even its jewelry is flower-related.

Velcheck said their work speaks for itself but the store’s reputation definitely doesn’t hurt. It’s been around for over 40 years and for some people, it’s become tradition.

“I had my first dance flowers come from here, my daughter and her dance flowers come from here, my wedding’s flowers were from here,” Velcheck said.

Whatever happens in the floral industry’s future, she said Blooming Crazy’s product will stay the same.

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