Teleflora (starting at $79) ranks relatively high in consumers' estimation compared with some of the big-name competition in the online flower retail industry. In Teleflora reviews on Epinions, for example, the average rating by more than 900 consumers hits 4 stars out of 5. Satisfied customers write of on-time delivery, good pricing, a user-friendly site, and orders that are, at the least, good approximations of the chosen arrangement if not what was specified. On the other hand, numerous Teleflora reviews on this site and at Yahoo Shopping -- where the company earns an average 1.5 stars out of 5 from nearly 600 customers -- offer up their share of digs. Complaints include communication problems with customer service (e.g., failure to request an email address for order confirmation, difficulty noting down the delivery address, no notice of delivery, language barriers, long sessions on the phone to complete an order, etc.) and the usual litany of late or missing deliveries, unilaterally cancelled orders, and arrangements of inferior quality (including those that don't match the images online). The site earned a failing grade from Consumer Warning Network when a cheaper mixed bouquet of carnations, roses, and lilies arrived in place of a dozen long-stemmed roses.
Teleflora ships directly from growers via UPS or FedEx rather than forwarding the order to a local florist. The upside of this arrangement is that the company is more directly accountable for botched deliveries and faulty orders. The direct shipment method also means flowers have been cut closer to delivery time, which should lead to a longer bloom upon arrival. But unlike orders fulfilled by florists, which arrive all gussied up with vases, paper, and ribbons, Teleflora flowers arrive in a box and require a do-it-yourself setup; even orders that come with a vase oblige the recipient to execute the arrangement solo. This may not be a deal breaker, but the chances of stealing someone's heart may be greater with the input of a professional.
Teleflora boasts a well-designed website that lets customers search for flowers based on occasion or by type of flower. It also offers a deal of the day for consumers looking for a discount. That said, Teleflora is not particularly cheap. In our comparison shopping, Teleflora charged $13 more for an order of 12 red roses than did ProFlowers, the competing direct-from-grower delivery service.