Time for indies to become the ‘everyday’ option
Wednesday 31 March
Eight out of 10 bottles of wines are bought in the supermarket in the UK. What a sorry state of affairs for independents. Add the fact that promotional offer is the most influential factor in a British man or woman’s buying decision and market looks like a dismal prospect.
But don’t despair! The latest research from YouGov poll suggests there is a place in our hearts and shopping baskets for specialists and wine merchants. The survey shows that wine drinkers actually value expertise and variety of choice above price, despite more than half (53%) admitting they didn’t buy wine from their local wine merchant.
Interestingly this contrasts with previous research by Wine Intelligence that suggests recommendation by shop staff is fairly low in importance when it comes to buying wine. Their 2008 survey showed us Brits were most influenced by grape variety and promotional deals.
However, if the latest YouGov research is to be believed then things are looking up for wine merchants with a decent range and informed staff. Most British adults buy their booze from the supermarket (74%) no doubt because it’s convenient and there are some pretty decent ranges (M&S & Waitrose, in particular). But the indies need to start playing the card that they are for everyday drinking, not simply special occasions.
The research also shows that drinkers aged 45 and over, especially women, are least likely to buy from their local wine merchant. Is it because it’s intimidating, perhaps? These women have money in their pockets and love wine. Go out there and entice them through your doors. Give them a reason to shop at your store, and they will come.