Best Online Flower Delivery Services of 2019

Anna Burleson ·
Entertainment Writer
Updated
We maintain strict editorial integrity when we evaluate products and services; however, Top Ten Reviews may earn money when you click on links.

This might surprise you, but reviewing flower delivery services is no walk in the park. In order to compare all sites fairly, we ordered either a dozen or two dozen red roses from each delivery service. Then we spent 12 days unboxing, watering, monitoring and sniffing the 10 bouquets. Eleven reviewers analyzed and graded each arrangement, and compared each delivery service’s product offerings and website, to determine the best company. We felt 1-800-Flowers.com was the best overall option. It offers several gifts in addition to flowers, and the roses we received from 1-800-Flowers.com had large, beautiful blooms that smelled great.       

Best Overall
1-800-Flowers.com
1-800-Flowers.com offers much more than just beautiful bouquets. With food, stuffed animals, household gifts and even jewelry, you can really wow your special someone.
View on 1-800-Flowers.com
@1-800-Flowers.com
Best Overall
1-800-Flowers.com
Best on a Budget
ProFlowers
The rose bouquet we ordered from ProFlowers was the least expensive we ordered, but they arrived fresh and beautiful.
View on ProFlowers
Best Shopping Experience
Teleflora
This bouquet of 12 roses arrived prearranged and beautiful with lots of greenery, large blossoms and vibrant coloring, and the website is really easy to use.
View on Teleflora
Product
Price
Overall Rating
Floral Selection
Ordering & Delivery
Customer Service
Non-Floral Gifts
Appearance & Freshness
Flower Life
Customizable Arrangements
Pre-Arranged Bouquet
Outsources to Local Florists
Includes Vase
Filled Our Order Correctly & On Time
Delivery Confirmation Email
Online Order Tracking
Email & Phone Assistance
Stuffed Animals
Tasty Treats
Décor
Jewelry
$0.00 1-800-Flowers
9.9 9.8 10 10 10
B+
11 days
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8.7 10 10 6 5
A+
6 days
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8.3 9.5 10 6 2.5
B+
11 days
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8 9.3 4.3 10 10
B
11 days
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7.6 9.5 4.3 10 5
A-
6 days
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-
Check Price
6.4 10 5.8 2 2.5
A+
6 days
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5.9 5 7.3 6 5
C
11 days
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5.6 6.3 7.3 2 5
B+
8 days
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4.7 5.5 4.3 6 0
F
9 days
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Best Overall
If you’re looking for more than just the typical roses and lilies, 1-800-Flowers.com is the place to shop. This delivery service has one of the largest selections of flowers out there, and the bouquet we ordered arrived with massive red rose blooms. But wait. There’s more. Jewelry, wreaths, chocolates, stuffed animals and don’t even begin to list the things you can find. You can also buy unique flower designs for special occasions, such as the Fabulous Feline Get Well, which is shaped like a tiny kitty and is sure to make anyone feel a little bit better.
1-800-Flowers.com outsources its arrangements to local florists, so we ordered the Rose Elegance bouquet, which arrived prearranged with 12 red roses, baby’s breath and some greenery. It stuck out from the rest of the bunch for its height and spry arrangement, and our reviewers gave it a B+ for its freshness and appearance. This was partially because the roses had some of the biggest blooms we had ever seen, which lasted for an impressive 11 days. This flower service has a huge selection and delivered a bouquet of roses that would have done the trick on Valentine’s Day, an anniversary or simply just because. For these reasons, this is our best overall pick.
Pros
  • You can buy much more than just flowers.
  • Our reviewers gave the roses we got a B+ for presentation and freshness.
  • Our roses lasted for about 10 days before wilting.
Cons
  • The outsourced bouquet arrangement wasn’t as pictured online.
  • Shipping costs are hard to find on the website.
  • The bouquet didn’t come with instructions or plant food.
1-800-Flowers.com
Read the full review
Best on a Budget
Flowers are expensive, aren’t they? We ordered the One Dozen Red Roses bouquet from ProFlowers at a shockingly reasonable price, and it was very well-liked by our team of reviewers.
ProFlowers sends a delivery confirmation email so you don’t have to wonder whether your surprise has arrived. It also provides online order tracking if you want to see where your order is. Extra gifts including stuffed animals, food, décor and jewelry are also available, so you can pretty much get everything with one visit. ProFlowers allows you to customize your order with different vases, or you can choose not to include a vase at all. Our order came in a box, which meant it was hard to unpackage. It wasn’t fun for us to struggle in the lab with the zip ties that secured the roses, and we imagine it would be less fun doing so at your desk. We understand secure packaging is important in keeping your blooms beautiful, but you’ll want to make sure that special someone has access to scissors if you send them boxed flowers. Our 11 reviewers rated bouquets based on appearance, smell, whether they would recommend the company to someone else, and whether they thought the flowers were worth the price. The ProFlower bouquet received a B for overall freshness and quality and lasted for an impressive 11 days.
Pros
  • The flowers we ordered lasted for about 11 days before wilting.
  • Our order was filled correctly and on time.
  • It comes with a moisture sponge to ensure your flowers are fresh.
Cons
  • The recipient has to assemble the bouquet.
  • The moisture sponge included with your roses makes a mess when you take it apart.
  • The flowers we ordered stayed closed for about three days before fully blooming.
ProFlowers
Read the full review
Best Shopping Experience
Teleflora stood out because of its large selection of bouquets and the stunning beauty of the dozen red roses we ordered and received. The website is easy to navigate and the company also offers a handful of other gifts to choose from if you’re really looking to impress.
With Teleflora you can choose between a standard, deluxe or premium bouquet in a huge variety of flowers. You can also buy other gifts such as balloons and chocolates, but the best part about shopping here is being able to search by flower color, type or “deal of the day.” With the latter option, you simply enter the occasion, recipient and price range and the website will generate a beautiful arrangement for you. One downside though is you can’t access your total shipping and handling costs until you have entered information about who is sending and receiving the flowers. These costs can vary by where you live but can sometimes cost $15 or more, drastically increasing how much you spend. The My True Love Bouquet with Long Stemmed Roses was outsourced to a local florist, so your own flower quality might vary. The arrangement we received had large deep-red blossoms that were already open, paired with several varieties of flat-leafed greenery that added just the right amount of contrast. Averaging data on appearance, smell and cost, our 11 reviewers gave this bouquet’s overall freshness and appearance an A+.
Pros
  • Our reviewers gave the flowers we ordered an A+ for freshness and appearance.
  • The bouquet we ordered came already assembled.
  • Teleflora’s website is well-designed and easy to use.
Cons
  • The flowers we ordered lacked any instructions or plant food.
  • Our roses wilted badly after about six days.
  • The additional gifts are limited to stuffed animals and tasty treats.
Teleflora
Read the full review
Best Exotic Flowers
Harry & David has some of the most unique flowers available.
There are a plenty of traditional blooms to choose from including roses, daisies and lilies, but there is also a huge selection of exotic flowers. You can get succulents, hydrangeas, herbs or even join the Bulb of the Month Club to receive amaryllis, tulips, crocuses or begonias, just to name a few. Instead of going for a traditional bouquet you could order a bonsai tree, orchid, or even a beautiful bunch of lavender. There are also unique vases and packaging so your order stands out. The bouquet of red roses we ordered received a relatively acceptable grade of C- from our team of reviewers.
Pros
  • There are many non-floral gifts.
Cons
  • The bouquet we ordered was expensive.
VariesHarry & David
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Best Website Navigation
We like FTD because both the flowers and the website are both rather beautiful.
It’s well-designed with beautiful photos. You can use the free text search to look for content by flower, color or holiday, or use preset tabs on the side of the web page to browse options for birthdays, anniversaries or even "just because”. You can "quick view" each bouquet and it's pricing information or view each bouquet on its own page to select the size, delivery location and date. There are extra gifts to add right then and there so you don't have to look for them separately. The roses we ordered arrived with small blooms, but they earned a grade of A- from our reviewers, so we’d recommend checking this website out.
Pros
  • The website is well-designed and easy to use.
Cons
  • The blooms on our bouquet were small.
VariesFTD
Read the full review

Flower Variety

Online flower delivery services offer a wide range of flowers for literally any occasion. Whether you’re looking for a happy bundle of daisies or a romantic bouquet of roses, you can find them online. One thing to keep in mind, however, is whether an online company sends flowers from its own warehouse or outsources to local florists. Companies that assemble their own bouquets are more likely to match the photo online, so you know exactly what you’re getting. When a local florist is contracted to fill an order, flowers can show up looking a little different because of artistic interpretation of a bouquet or sometimes even a shortage of a certain type of flower.

Delivery

The sticker price of any given bouquet from an online flower delivery service can increase considerably with a delivery charge. In our experience, delivery or shipping and handling can cost anywhere between $10 and $20 depending on what you purchase and where you live, so even an inexpensive bouquet’s price an end up almost doubling. Shipping costs vary depending on where you’re shipping the flowers. Most of the websites in our lineup didn’t list their delivery charges up front at all until we entered our order information, including where we wanted the bouquet to go. On the upside, some websites do offer free shipping if you purchase a more expensive bouquet, usually over $50.

How to Make Your Flowers Last

There are several things you can do to keep cut flowers alive for as long as possible. ProFlowers recommends cutting 1 to 2 inches off the stems before putting them in a vase. Cut the stems at an angle to improve water intake, and continue this process every couple of days. Use room temperature water in your vase and change it out every two or three days, along with any flower food that came with the bouquet. It might seem counterintuitive, but you should keep cut flowers out of direct sunlight and heat. Don't display them near fresh fruit either, as fruit releases gases that can kill your flowers faster.

ProFlowers conducted tests with myriad household items that are supposed to keep your flowers alive longer: vodka, apple cider vinegar, hairspray and even bleach. It found keeping flowers chilled in the fridge rendered the best results, along with adding a little lemon-lime soda to the bouquet's water. The home remedy yielding the worst results was hairspray, so keep the Aqua Net away from your flowers at all cost!

Why Trust Us?

Sadly, we at Top Ten Reviews don’t get flowers delivered every day, but we do have a smattering of people with a wide range of flower experience and preferences. Some of us like big bouquets with lots of greenery, while others like a simple peace lily. Whether it’s for an anniversary or an attempt to make up for a very, very big oops – like forgetting your anniversary — we know it’s important that the flowers you order arrive beautiful and on time.

One of the biggest takeaways from this experience: Some of the companies we ordered from got it wrong. Some bouquets we received were short a flower or two, while others sent us 12 even though we had ordered 18. One bouquet came a day late because two websites contracted with the same local florist who in turn only sent us one because in reality, how often do two orders come in to a flower shop on the same day for the same person? The florist corrected the situation, but it gave us a really good handle of how customer service works – and sometimes doesn’t work – when it comes to online flower delivery. 

How We Tested

We thought the best way to compare online flower delivery websites fairly would be to order the same thing from each one. So, we ordered either a dozen or two dozen red roses from each website and scheduled them for delivery on the same day. When they arrived we either left them in their respective vases or unpackaged them from their boxes, noting how they looked and following the instructions that came with each bouquet. All of the boxed flowers came with at least one packet of plant food and instructions to clip about an inch or two off the bottom of the stems before putting them in a vase. The pre-arranged bouquets came with no instructions and no plant food, so we left them alone.

We let the bouquets sit overnight before having 11 reviewers visit our lab to literally stop and smell the roses. They took surveys rating the look and smell of each bouquet, as well as whether they appeared to be worth the price, including shipping and handling. The flowers remained in our lab in the following days as we kept their water fresh and collected data on how quickly their blooms opened. We also waited for how long it took them to die, which to us was when the majority of the blooms were droopy, falling apart and no longer visually appealing.

When it came to filling our orders, we discovered national companies that outsource to local florists often don’t arrive as they look on the website. We lowered scores for companies that sent us too few roses but didn’t hold it against companies that sent us more than the order called for.

Poinsettias: Festive Flowers for the Holidays

Poinsettias are very popular around the holidays and can be found on most online flower delivery websites. The large, red blooms with contrasting green leaves are a staple in many homes during the winter months. Check flower delivery websites for sales and specials on poinsettias in mid-November so you’ll have the plant in time for Christmas. Healthy poinsettias have green leaves, so remove any that have yellow edges or spots. The plant as a whole should be about two and a half times taller than its diameter as well.

Caring for poinsettias is relatively easy if you keep them indoors. Keep the plant in indirect light for most of the day if at all possible. FTD recommends putting the plant near east-facing windows so the poinsettia can get a good dose of morning sun followed by shade as the day progresses. In general, avoid temperature extremes. These flowers hate the cold, but they also won't survive very long in hot temperatures. Only water the plant when the soil feels dry to the touch, and if you keep the plant in the container it comes in, make sure there are holes in the bottom so the water can drain out. If there's nowhere for the water to go, the soil and roots could rot.

The process of reblooming a poinsettia after Christmas is much more hands-on and delicate. Through March, keep watering the plant when the soil becomes dry. Deprive the plant of water in April until it shrivels and looks like it's dying, then move it to a warm dark place. In May, re-pot the poinsettia with new soil and water it well. Throughout the summer, you need to continually groom, fertilize and keep the plant watered as well as provide it with a decent amount of sunlight. In October and November, keep the poinsettia in a sunny window, but move it into total darkness from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. every day. In late November and early December, you can stop fertilizing the plant, and if you've done everything correctly, it should be in bloom. Then repeat.

How Much Do Flowers Cost?

The cost of a bouquet varies by the type of flowers you want and how many. Obviously, the larger and more extravagant the bouquet is, the more expensive it is. We ordered a dozen roses from the 10 companies we tested and discovered that bouquet cost an average of about $75, including all shipping and handling fees. There are more extravagant bouquets with balloons and chocolates available for around $250, or simpler arrangements for about $30.

Going Green

While a bouquet of flowers might seem environmentally friendly, that’s not always the case. Flowers that arrive in a box rather than pre-arranged actually create a lot of trash. This includes the cardboard box the flowers come in, any paper or plastic inside used to protect the blooms along with zip ties or wires. If you want to limit your environmental footprint we recommend making sure you’re ordering flowers that come arranged by a florist. These bouquets also have the added benefit of convenience for the recipient. They don’t have to hunt down scissors and water when they receive the bouquet.

Shop Early

One way to avoid paying a fortune for flowers is to order them with plenty of time to spare. Flower delivery websites let you select a delivery date for a bouquet several months ahead of time, so even if you feel like you can wait, you might as well put the order in now. Ordering flowers for same-day or fast delivery can cost a lot more than regular shipping and some websites might not be able to accommodate your needs, so it’s best to think ahead.

1-800 Flowers lists which bouquets are available for same-day delivery, but this varies based on where you send the flowers. Make sure you enter delivery information before assuming you can send out the bouquet. The website also charges you more to have flowers delivered quicker. Next business day delivery costs $9.99, second business day delivery costs $7.99 and third business day delivery costs $6.99. This is on top of the $4.99 flat shipping rate on the least expensive bouquets the site has to offer. In short, waiting until the last minute to order flowers can end up costing you a lot. Being able to pre-order flowers and select delivery dates several months out means you don’t have to worry about last-minute gifts. Order your Mother’s Day, birthday and anniversary flowers now while you’re thinking about it.

Staying in Season

It’s easy to stick with tradition and buy roses on Valentines Day, white carnations for weddings and lilies for funerals. However, for better bouquets, we suggest buying based on season rather than tradition. Many flower delivery websites and local florists build amazing floral creations based on whatever is in season. For example, in the fall, you see more sunflowers, mums and greenery. In the spring, there are more daisies, lilies and baby’s breath. Following these trends leads to more luscious bouquets. In fact, if you insist on a certain bloom that isn’t in season, it could look dead or droopy. This also means availability varies depending on where you order from. Trusting the florist to arrange the most beautiful version of the bouquet you order is often the best route to take.

Some flowers bloom through more than one season. The following is a list of what time of year you should shop for certain flowers:

  • Spring: amaryllis, bird of paradise, freesia, hollyhock, larkspur, stargazer lily, orchid, peony, pussy willow, tulip, poppy
  • Summer: calla lily, carnation, chrysanthemum, dahlia, foxglove, hydrangea, lilac
  • Autumn: baby's breath, carnation, iris, gerbera daisy, orchid, Queen Anne's lace, roses, salvia, sunflower
  • Winter: acacia, evergreens, holly berry, pansy, phlox, roses
Repurposing Roses

If you've noticed your roses aren't looking very fresh, there are several things you can do to give them new life. Making your own rose water is fast and easy; simply boil water, add dried rose petals and simmer until they've lost their color. Let the water cool before pouring it through a sieve into the bottle of your choice. Potpourri is a beautiful way to brighten up a room and make it smell inviting and floral. You can dry your roses by hanging them in a dry place upside down or by removing the petals and letting them sit in the sunlight for a short time. Then simply add slices of dried citrus fruits, cinnamon sticks and a few drops of your favorite essential oil. Toss the mixture together gently and you’ve got something to make your whole house smell amazing. You can also put dried rose petals or the potpourri mixture into fine mesh bags to create sachets. Bury the bags into your clothing drawers for great-smelling jeans or give them as beautiful gifts. Finally, you can add a few pieces of dried rose petals to your bath salts to make for an extra luxurious bath-time experience. Used sparsely, rose petal fragments will add a slight floral scent.

Feeding Your Flowers

Most flower delivery services include a small packet of plant food you should mix in with the water in the bouquet vase. Have you ever wondered what that powdery substance actually is? Buzzfeed reports these packets usually contain citric acid, sugar and bleach. This is because a byproduct of photosynthesis is sugars that help the plant grow. Adding a little extra sugar to the water the plant consumes essentially gives the bouquet a little boost. You can make alternative plant food at home with 1 teaspoon of baking soda, 1 tablespoon of salt and half a teaspoon of ammonia added to 1 gallon of water, according to ProFlowers.

If you order a particularly high maintenance plant or bouquet for someone, you might want to let them know of anything they’ll need to do to keep the gift alive. For instance, plants with yellow or pale green leaves often are experiencing a nitrogen deficiency, which can be solved by adding coffee grounds into the soil. If the yellowing occurs right along the veins or edges of the leaves, it could be a magnesium deficiency. This can be righted by putting salt on top of the soil before you water the plant.

The Gift That Keeps on Giving

No matter how much tender loving care you give a bouquet, there comes a time when it will start to die. There’s no need to despair! Most flowers can have a second life if you save the seeds and replant them.

Start by cutting the flower head off the stem. It's easier to collect seeds this way. If a flower has seeds for harvest, it will usually be fairly obvious where they are in the flower head. Use your fingers or a small tool like tweezers to remove the seeds. Some flowers, such as petunias, have extremely small seeds, so you might need a magnifying glass. Others, like sunflowers, have very obvious large seeds you can simply remove by grabbing them.

Once you remove the seeds, place them in an envelope, seal them in and store them in a dry place. Remember to be gentle so you don't crush any of the seeds you collect. For the best results, wait until spring to plant the seeds. If you get a potted plant from a friend or family member, you can also remove the seeds and make an entire colony of plants. Also, flowers that grow from bulbs are easy to uproot and move to different containers if needed.