Buying Wine Online!

red wine bottles

Buying wine online – the consumers’ choice awards!
Following on from my opinions a couple of weeks ago, about not being a wine o’ clock cliché, I have been pondering how much wine purchasing actually goes on online now, especially compared to BC (before children…!) BC, dropping into a supermarket or wine shop on the way home from work, in the middle of the day on a lazy weekend, actually, pretty much any time you fancied-was easy breezy. Now, not so much…! To keep stocked up to your needs, and for price comparison purposes, it’s a fairly safe bet that more of us take advantage of online competition to buy at least some of our wines via the internet.

Where do you purchase your wines and what prompts your decision to buy from a particular online retailer? Customer service, range, value for money? Which retailer scores best on average in all categories? If wine is important to your lifestyle, then you are probably likely to go all Compare The Meerkat over getting the right stuff, for the best price!

Some people, somewhere, set out to answer what prompts us to click ‘buy!!!!,’ when choosing the glorious grape nectar, with some interesting results… *stay tuned.*

True reflection

The results of the first ever awards are in – and the one thing that can be said is that it’s an eclectic choice! Views are coming straight from online purchasers themselves- so it’s a true reflection of the quality and service they’ve found outstanding in 2017.

Of the 1200 purchasers responding to the survey, unsurprisingly a large number had shopped online from the big retailers Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, Majestic Wine and M&S Wine. Almost a third of respondents had shopped online for wine from Tesco in the last year, for instance.

Waitrose Cellar, Laithwaite’s and Morrisons attracted a smaller percentage of online purchases than the leading five, whilst between just 6 to 10 per cent of respondents had shopped online with the social media savvy, customer-sponsored Naked Wines, online supermarket Ocado, Aldi or Virgin Wines.

Value for money

However, number of purchases per company certainly did not reflect overall value for money when it came to the awards, with Aldi securely taking the gold medal in that category and Asda awarded silver. Laithwaite’s and M&S Wine maintained their long-established reputation for quality in customer service, taking gold and silver awards respectively in that category.

For wine range, the clear choice was Waitrose Cellar in first place and Laithwaite’s picking up a silver to add to their gold.


Taking cue from Naked Wine “angels”

Naked Wine keeps its finger on the pulse of consumer tastes through its unique approach to customer engagement. There’s currently a waiting list to be a Naked Wine Angel (someone who invests a certain amount of money into the Naked Wine company per month, to go towards independent wine makers, in return for vouchers and discounts.) It appears that the company’s speedy and reliable delivery is a major part of being a satisfied customer, since Naked Wine took gold in the delivery category, with Ocado running up for silver.

Overall, though, wine purchasers overwhelmingly chose the well-established Majestic Wine as their online retailer of 2017. After forty years in business, it’s clear that the company has developed the skills required to meet the needs of the consumer and stay ahead in the very demanding and competitive marketplace of 2017.

The picture that emerges is one of preference for specialist wine sellers in terms of range, customer service and delivery, whilst major online retailers take the lead in value for money.

Choice changes?

Do the awards accurately reflect your experience of the online retailers when buying the post bedtime treats? For bulk buying, I have always used Majestic, and if I ever brave my local Waitrose, with all of it’s elders ready to huff and puff over my pushchair and feral children, I agree that they have a brilliant range. Going out to peruse wines, is definitely a treat. But in todays digital, time constricted age, buying online is easier, and knowing what others have found to be the best options, makes the decision a lot easier. I wonder how the online wine buying market will look in 2018!


*This is a collaborative post.