One of Australia’s leading online flower delivery service, Roses Only, has reported record customer retention, doubled orders, mitigated the impact from the Brisbane floods and is looking at business expansion with support from Macquarie Telecom. Roses Only employs around 300 staff and has long recognised the role that reliable technology plays in improving customer experiences. Kelly Taggart, CEO of Roses Only, explains how the technology from Macquarie Telecom has helped.
Macquarie Telecom has helped Roses Only Group, Australia’s leading online flower delivery service, achieve record levels of customer retention. With access to cloud, VoIP and SD-WAN services, the business delivered twice the number of orders during last year’s COVID lockdown and is eyeing an expansion of brands under its portfolio.
Based out of Brisbane, Roses Only Group delivers floral gifts, fruit hampers and wine to customers across Australia via 10 local warehouses. As one of Australia’s first e-commerce businesses, Roses Only has long recognised the role reliable technology plays in improving customer experiences.
According to CEO, Kelly Taggart, Macquarie’s cloud infrastructure and telecoms services have enabled the business to accurately crunch data and forecast the availability of 100 flower and stem varieties, contributing to its industry leading waste percentage of less than two percent.
Last year, however, a new challenge emerged when COVID lockdowns saw twice the usual amount of orders filter into the business. Taggart said Macquarie’s reliable and scalable digital backbone and customer service helped meet this influx.
“Our customers expect seamless experiences, whether they’re looking to change a delivery address halfway through a journey or we need to communicate delays so no surprises are ruined,” she said.
“When order numbers doubled during lockdown, Macquarie helped us maintain this standard and prevent website downtime. Our own seamless experience with Macquarie’s local team meant we could also easily call them if any issues arose and have them fixed on the spot.”
Taggart said the successful service delivery during lockdown has since seen Roses Only achieve record levels of customer retention.
She said: “The pandemic showed customers they can purchase, customise and alter orders from the palm of their hand. It’s been great to see the amount of people already re-engaging our services this year, and we haven’t even hit the peak Christmas period.”
Managing customer orders during Brisbane floods
Roses Only’s strong technology environment played a part in managing service continuity when the February/March floods in Brisbane impacted one of its warehouses.
Taggart said: “Reliable communication is key during these events. Luckily, we had plenty of warning ahead of the flood, and our deliveries were only delayed by 24 hours. During this time, we were able to contact thousands of customers via phone and text and update delivery dates on our system without a hitch.”
Taggart continued that with this strong foundation, Roses Only has the confidence to embark on growth plans.
“We’re looking at adding more brands and businesses to our mix, and the support from Macquarie is comforting in this respect. I’m not concerned that adding another website will be a house of cards. We’ve got the stability there to grow and scale.”
Luke Clifton, Group Executive at Macquarie Telecom, part of Macquarie Telecom Group. said: “The practice of gifting flowers dates back to the Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and the Roman Empire. Today, thanks to technology advances and companies like Roses Only, the process is both simpler and more sophisticated. We’re excited to continue working closely with the team and to see how the business evolves, grows and meets future challenges.”
Taggart spoke to Intelligent SME.tech about how the company has grown.
How did you start your business and how has it grown?
Roses Only officially started in 1995 in Sydney by a family that had sold flowers since the 1960s. In 2014 it was purchased by the owners of 1300 Flowers and Fast Flowers, and it’s since grown to be Australia’s leading online flower delivery service. We’ve now got 10 sites across Australia including three floral studios across Brisbane, Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. Around 300 full time and casual staff work for the business, and we have about 100 different types of flowers and greenery in our range.
When and why did you decide to enlist the services of Macquarie Telecom?
We’ve engaged the local Macquarie team for more than a decade to provide the telecoms and cloud infrastructure required to provide seamless customer experiences. Over this time, we’ve integrated new services such as SD-WAN, which is allowing us to better prioritise our traffic to ensure voice is treated as the top priority so the customer experience on the phones is perfect.
Can you tell me more about how VoIP has helped your business?
Any time we communicate with our customer, we aim for a seamless, fast and pleasant experience. That extends to our phone calls where it is important the voice quality is there so we can relay our message to our customer, or our drivers, as quickly and clearly as possible.
Has Roses Only always had a strong technology environment and why?
Technology has always played a huge part in our business. Data is one of the key pillars on which we’re built, and everything that we do goes back to having really good data as an input. Macquarie’s cloud infrastructure and telecoms services have enabled us to accurately crunch data and forecast the availability of 100 flower and stem varieties, contributing to our industry leading waste percentage of less than two percent.
Tell me more about your growth plans.
Roses Only is geared for growth. We’re looking at adding more brands and businesses to our mix.Click below to share this article