Our July numbers suck. Income was way down from last year. Our COGS (cost of goods sold) were up in proportion to our income. Payroll was down a little but not enough to really make a difference. The bottom line doesn’t look great. July is always a slow month for us. Income is down because a lot of customers are on vacation. And it’s too hot for weddings. And people have flowers in their gardens. And every farmer at the farmers market has flowers (whether they are a flower farmer or not). And people get flowers with their CSAs. And on and on. Mostly, our COGS is up because flower farmers have raised prices a lot this year. And it’s not just flower costs that are up. Delivery fees are up. Summer is also when we try to re-up on vases and supplies – all of which have higher prices (for the ones we can even get) than just a few months ago.
I know every industry is struggling with prices now, and I am grateful for the business I have. I try not to freak out in July because our work is seasonal. I remind myself summer is always slow. Fall will be here before we know it and things will be picking up in just a few short weeks. But the cost of flowers, deliveries, vases and other supplies are not going down. I raised prices once this year already. Flowers are a luxury and my customers have rising prices on everything. I’m scrutinizing every purchase, ordering from fewer growers to reduce delivery fees, even making changes my business model (hello blog reader, do you know about my online classes?). And, I’m also counting my blessings. Better days are ahead.