As we face a socially-distanced December preparing for a Christmas centred on more intimate group gatherings, we look at ways in which you as wine business owners can reach your customers over the festive period and boost your Christmas sales.
In a year marred by uncertainty, the trade has never depended upon a good Christmas sales period more, yet reaching customers and predicting their behaviours has never been more challenging. Occasions that so often drive revenue for both the off and on-trade, such as office Christmas parties, look set to be disrupted as a result of Covid-19.
Whilst ongoing restrictions and curfews will inevitably take their toll, there are consumer trends that retailers can take advantage of, if they are able to move quickly. Here are our top 5 tips to make the most of the festive period and boost your Christmas sales.
Attend L’Ecole du Vin de Bordeaux webinars on Thursday 10th December focusing on Current Consumer Trends in the UK or watch back our previous webinar on Getting Heard above the Digital Noise. Designed specifically to provide you with the support you need, the Bordeaux Means Business webinars will share exclusive insight and opinion from industry experts on the latest consumer trends and behaviours to help wine business owners increase their bottom-line, an unmatched resource for both the festive season and looking towards 2021. Join us for Bordeaux Means Business webinars.
2020 data shows that there is no sign of Rosé sales slowing down in the UK and it would be unwise to dismiss the style’s allure as only lasting over the summer months. For Bordeaux, Rosé is one of the fastest growing styles with UK sales up to their highest levels since 2014, making the UK the second largest export market for Bordeaux Rosé.
Given that this year will break with many traditions, and perhaps be a catalyst for new ones, why not encourage your consumers to dispel erroneous rules around wine drinking? Christmas does not have to be restricted to full bodied reds and fortified wines: dry pale rosés from Bordeaux are ideal for many festive meals and occasions. Whether as an apéritif or paired with a smoked salmon starter, these wines certainly deserve a place at the Christmas table. For those merchants taking part in the Bordeaux Make a Case campaign, consider including a rosé in your offering.
We have seen the behaviours of UK wine drinkers, in response to the current pandemic, largely polarise with regard to spending. Many have tightened their belts and sought economic stability, while others have found themselves with more disposable income than ever before, due to reduced travel expenses, cancelled holiday plans and fewer opportunities to engage with leisure activities. The latter group have typically spent more on luxury goods and in the off-trade and on-trade (when open), we have certainly seen an increased trend towards trading up.
Many retailers have focused their Christmas campaigns on ways in which consumers can treat themselves and their loved-ones over the festive period, and as a result, we can expect many consumers to increase their average spend per bottle over the festive period. For the off-trade this should influence the price points featured in ‘eye level bins’ and on stacks, while the on-trade should perhaps reflect this trend by increasing their ‘by the glass’ offering. Both should help boost your Christmas sales.
It is no surprise that the pandemic has pushed physical and mental health to the forefront of people’s minds. While on one hand this has driven a move by many to limit occasions on which they consume alcohol, on the other, eco-conscious Brits have instead looked to examine what they drink, accelerating the trend towards organic, biodynamic and vegan wines.
This interest in sustainable wines is likely to continue into the festive season and Bordeaux is a great place for your customers to look for these wines. With 65% of its vineyard holding a sustainable certification and the largest area of organic vine growing in France at 14,000 hectares, there is a vast selection of high-quality sustainable wines consumers to choose from.
The CIVB (Bordeaux Wine Council) is so committed to supporting sustainable winemaking practices that they have prioritised helping consumers find sustainable wines by including a new ‘Ethical’ category in the inaugural Bordeaux Hot 50 Selection 2020 which lists the most impressive organic, biodynamic, sustainable or vegan wines available in the UK, as judged by a panel of expert judges. Take a look at all wines in the ethical category of this years Hot 50 selection.
With strict lockdown restrictions lifted in many parts of the UK, it is likely that many consumers will flock to on-trade establishments, albeit in household bubbles. However, there is still undoubtedly a great opportunity to connect with consumers online and virtual tastings are an excellent way of doing this. With large office parties unlikely to happen and many groups restricted from meeting over the festive period, online events offer an excellent way to boost your Christmas sales, provide added value and educate your customer base. Why not create a case of 6 different styles of Bordeaux wine and host an online Zoom tasting?