Vin65 Blog

DTC wine thoughts served up by Vin65

Andrew Kamphuis
November 30, 2009 | Ecommerce | Andrew Kamphuis

What do customers want this holiday season? released the results of their eHoliday Study pre-holiday consumer and retailer surveys early in November. Here is a brief summary of the key findings when consumers were asked, "When choosing to make holiday purchases from a given retailer, what is most important to you?":

  1. Seeing the shopping cart total before starting the checkout process (yes this beat out other factors like values, deals, merchant reputation, etc)
  2. Clear product descriptions
  3. Value for money / good deals followed it up with a second post summarizing results of a survey of consumers about which specific Web site features they rely on most when making holiday purchases.  When rated out of 5:

  • 4.1 rated reviews from fellow customers as important.
  • 4.0 rated clearance sale pages important
  • 3.8 rated feature sale item pages important
  • 3.8 rated shipping deadline calendar as important

While none of these results are surprising, it still is astounding how many wineries don't address these issues that these survey results prove are very important to their customers. Doing so could bring that customer back to purchase again.


Michael Duffy's Gravatar
Michael Duffy
@ Nov 30, 2009 at 10:32 AM
Nothing astounds me about winery e-commerce anymore. :-)

Frankly, I just don't think that online sales amount to a very large percentage of any winery's total sales. Do you (as an e-commerce vendor) have any stats?

Andrew Kamphuis's Gravatar
Andrew Kamphuis
@ Nov 30, 2009 at 11:17 AM
This link was tweeted to me by @MelissaDobson -

Our clients vary widely. For some the web does amount for a sizable percentage of their total sales. For lots of other clients, your right, and they don't amount to very much.

Peter Andres's Gravatar
Peter Andres
@ Dec 1, 2009 at 10:13 AM
There are a lot of reasons that wineries don't do very well online. For one why would I go and purchase wine at full price from a winery and then pay a shipping penalty on top of that when I can go down to the store and get wine at the retail price without paying the shipping penalty. What is even more amazing is that a winery would rather not provide a discount on wine or include free shipping but would give a retailer a 50% trade discount.

Maybe wineries don't want to threaten their retail partnerships? But until wineries are willing to extend comparable bottle prices to that of retail stores for their customers then wine will not be sold on a large scale on the web. The web site will continue to be more a means of building brand trust and customer loyalty through other programs like the wine club or social media tools like ratings and reviews.

Andrew Kamphuis's Gravatar
Andrew Kamphuis
@ Dec 1, 2009 at 6:31 PM
@Peter - that was pretty pesimistic :). I agree that I shouldn't be able to buy wine cheaper in my local retail store than online (or I won't buy online).

I don't think that price is the only issue. I think the customer experience has to improve all around.

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