It was only a matter of time. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), which has expanded into nearly every other retail category including home delivery of groceries in certain markets, is getting into the floral delivery business.
Over the past month, the massive online retailer has begun selling and shipping flower arrangements via its Amazon Curated Flower Collection service. In the past, Amazon customers could buy fresh flowers on Amazon, but the service was handled through third-party sellers. Amazon began its own floral service in early August, according to All Things D.
For now, Amazon's arrangements are limited to six different offerings, and delivery is available only in the 48 contiguous U.S. states. In addition, Amazon customers cannot schedule a delivery date for their flowers. "We are not able to offer scheduled delivery yet, but are working to bring you this feature as soon as possible," according to a Q&A section of the Amazon Curated Flower Collection page.
But Amazon's established distribution network and successful track record in all other areas of retail will likely lead the e-commerce giant to be a major contender in the online floral category as well. A key question is how quickly Amazon can ramp up scheduled deliveries, since the e-tailer is competing against both online florists and networks of local flower shops in a commodity that is typically fragile and calls for time-sensitive delivery.
That said, Amazon's value pricing could give online floral competitors such as 1-800-Flowers (NASDAQ:FLWS) a run for their money. A dozen assorted roses with clear glass vase on the Amazon Curated Flower Collection page retails for $28.92, while 1-800-Flowers' current price for the same arrangement is $49.99.
- See this All Things D story
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