Newest Review: ... you don't like websites or would prefer to deal with 'real people', you can request a brochure containing all products that bunches.co... more
A quality company hidden in a basic site
Member Name: sbw80
Advantages: I love their flowers and balloons and they are affordable
Disadvantages: The website is useable but it could be a lot better
I've had both flowers and balloons sent to me as presents via bunches.co.uk. I was so impressed with the quality, flowers lasted almost up to a month, that I have now started using the site to order presents.
Bunches is based in Nottingham and has been operating since 1989, growing from a flower stall to an international family business since (The history in the 'About Us' section of the website is pretty interesting if you have time to read).
The website is not the greatest I've ever seen but it's more than adequate. Tabs basically split products into six categories;
* Luxury Bouquets
* Extra Value Flowers
* Gift Sets
* House Plants
* Helium Balloons
There are also seasonal options, such as mother's day, or spring flowers. All are easily accessible and makes what you are looking for pretty straight forward. A selection box also allows you to view flowers by suggested occasion, type, price group or colour; however these options are a bit hidden in the middle of the page. There is also a pretty standard search option.
Photos of the products are to a high quality and the items I have ordered actually looked like they did on the website. The general layout is pretty but there does seem to be quite a bit of clutter, thus it's not as easy to use as it could be. It is a bit annoying that I cannot see all flowers at once or sort based upon price however flowers in each section are placed in low to high price order generally. Options to compare products better, including extras that can only be added at the basket, would be useful.
The website lacks dynamics that other sites such as interflora has, rather appearing as a duplication of a sales brochure and not taking advantage of an online site for comparing and contrasting options. Without being rude, the site feels a bit cheap, focusing on looking pretty rather than functionality.
All online orders include a free box of 8 disc chocolates (Which taste like easter egg). These are nice but do contain advertising for bunches.co.uk on them. Smart idea but is more like getting a chocolate bar free rather than a box of chocolates (I'm not complaining though, free is free).
Classic Value Flowers - Prices range from £11.99 for 12 carnations to £22.99 for pink Asiatic Lilies, pink Alstroemeria and two-tone Cherry Tessino Spray Carnations. There are also bouquets featuring tulips, pussy willow, Dutch Freesia, Dendrobium Orchids and many more. If you want a cheap, pretty bunch then this is the place for you.
Luxury Bouquets - Flowers in this category start at £23.99 and go up to £44.99 for two dozen red roses. There's less options in this section but there is still a number of different flowers, including very pretty pink daisies and avalanche roses.
Extra Value Flowers - Provides similar options to the classic value flowers but bunches are extra large. Prices go from 18.99 to 28.99.
House Plants - These range from £18.99 to £26.99. I really don't know much about plants but the prices seem reasonable compares to other sites.
Helium Balloons - Priced at £12.99, a lot of different occasions are covered (My personal favourite, there's nothing like opening a box and having a balloon fly out).
Gift Sets - these are combinations of flowers or balloons with a mini celebration cake (The type Clintons used to sell), greetings cards, boxes of Belgian chocolates, or bears. These options can also be added on checkout and range from £1.99 for a mini inflated balloon to £4.99 to chocolate flaked truffles. It's nice to have the option of added extras however it would be nice to be able to decide what I want to include before the checkout stage otherwise if I want to know prices with different flower options I have to keep adding and deleting things from the basket.
Personalised Cards - You can add a little homemade style greetings card to your order for around £2.99. You can personalise the message inside which bunches print on a label and stick inside. There is an option to preview your message online and is nice and easy to use but you could get a much nicer card from websites such as moon pig for the same price that are much more personal. The bunches card I received was in the plastic cover rather than an envelope which seemed a bit impersonal.
There is also an option to have flowers delivered monthly for a set period, prices for this option vary depending upon the type of flowers wanted.
All items that I've found include delivery via Royal Mail in the price stated which is great as you don't have to worry about postage prices. You can order for any future date but as it is Royal Mail bunches cannot guarantee delivery on a specific date. Obviously Royal mail do not deliver on Sundays or Bank Holidays and same day delivery is not an option.
For £5.50 you can request a courier delivery (Currently by Fed Ex, but is Royal Mail special delivery on Saturdays in some geographical areas) that offers a guaranteed delivery on the day of your choice between 7.30am and 7pm.
All of this information and more is easy to access on the website and is written in a way that is easy to comprehend.
I've used the Royal Mail option and have got lucky regarding when my items were delivered. When someone sent me a balloon for my birthday I ended up having to go to the post office to collect it as I missed the delivery but it was delivered on the right day, therefore I would think that most Royal Mail deliveries would get there on time. For my mother's day delivery I have selected courier just in case but generally I don't feel the need for the extra cost.
Because the main products sold are perishable there isn't a straight forward returns policy. There is a complaints procedure, for if you're not with the product, that is stated clearly on the site. Complaints must be with 14 days that the order was dispatched. A Freephone number as well as an address to write to is provided and I think it's very straight forward and written really well that suggests the company cares about customer service. Their phone line available between 8.30am and 6.00pm Monday to Friday and 8.30am to 12.30pm Saturday, so you can call outside of normal work hours.
"We aim to respond to customer service matters within one working day and resolve all complaints within three working days, either by replacing the bouquet or refunding your money. Calls may be monitored for training purposes and to maintain our high level of service."
~Money off & Offers~
Bunches offers a customer reward scheme in the form of posy points. You collect 1 Posy Point for every 10p spent and each Posy Point is worth £0.005, therefore flowers costing £19.99 earn you 200 points and gives £1 to spend. You can use points against future orders.
Quidco also give cashback and often have special offers for bunches, cashback is currently at 10%.
The site also includes some useful sections such as 'Caring for your flowers', which contains a large number of tips and how to videos to care for specific types of flowers.
If you don't like websites or would prefer to deal with 'real people', you can request a brochure containing all products that bunches.co.uk provide and can place orders over the phone. You can also contact them if you have any special requests not listed on the website. They have a Freephone contact number which is always handy, one of the reasons I stopped ordering things by phone was because of the bill.
They also have a blog, which I've only skimmed but seems pretty amusing, and can be followed on facebook, twitter and RSS feed.
Bunches is a great site that offers quality products at a reasonable price. Although the website is a bit basic and is not very dynamic, it is easy to use and is nice to the eye. It dores generally feel a bit cluttered but everything I need is there and is easy to comprehend.
Summary: Great production from an established company at a good price.
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