By Tammy Sons
Ordering anything online can be a daunting task, but when it comes to ordering plants and trees online, there can be an added layer of unease. Part of that has to do with ordering living things online being a bit different than most people are used to. Getting some clothes, a book, electronics or any number of durable goods is common nowadays. Why is ordering plants and trees online different?
In large part, people worry about what condition they will arrive in. There are less than reputable wholesalers out there who think with the profit margin first rather than the product. This is true in any business. A few bad experiences get around and before you know it you are hesitant to place an order even when you really want to. How do you know you are dealing with a reputable online nursery? Here are a few things to look for.
-- The first thing you need to check for is whether or not the site is trusted. Are they endorsed for having good business and privacy protocols by an independent agency like Verisign? If not, you may want to look elsewhere.
-- How does the site itself look and operate? Are items easy to find? Do they have plenty of information available to help you make the best decision regarding your purchase? Do they provide a working email address to be contacted at should you have any questions or a problem trying to place your order? Even great sites glitch - and when they do you want to deal with a company that can and will help you. Is the site easy to navigate? Are photos clear, and are they assigned to the correct products?
If you can answer ”yes” to these questions, you are dealing with a company that takes some pride in their site and product.
-- Is the site actively updated. Daily updates are not necessary, nor the hallmark of a good company on its own, but do you want to deal with a company that has loads of outdated information? How frustrating is it to get all excited about your order only to find that suddenly a particular tree is unavailable? How many times have you tried to place an order only to find the price went up on the invoice and didn’t match the lower rate onsite? Attention to detail matters! If a business cares enough to stay current, they care about providing you with the best shopping experience.
-- How long have they been in business? Do you want to take your chances with a new company that may still be getting their act together? The odds are that the concept doesn’t excite you much. What you want to find is a company that has been in business awhile - the longer the better! If a company can stay in business 0ver 50 years, they are doing it because they provide a great product and service! You do not last that long just dialing it in every day!
-- Is their licensing in order? Are their state certifications current? Do they belong to major organizations like the American Nurseryman’s Association? Have they been positively rated by independent agencies like Dunn & Bradstreet? These are positive, essential attributes to look for.
- Finally, what do their customers have to say? Are they satisfied? How satisfied? If you find a nursery doing business online with a 99% or better satisfaction rate - you have struck gold! Can they back it up? It’s easy to read reviews online, but can they give you actual real references scattered around the country you can contact? That is going the extra mile and then some!
There is no point in taking chances with your hard earned money! When you need a reputable nursery online, you may have to look around awhile, or you can deal with an established company like Tennessee Wholesale Nursery. We go the extra mile for our 4,000+ online customers in all 50 states the same as we do for our friends down the street.