Just thought it would be interesting to publish this. Vinfolio posted the results of a study about wine buying behavior. This study is posted a few weeks after I talked about what I call the Wine Life value chain (WLVC) and why it is that friends are the best source of wine recommendations. I also concluded that another great source, based on how the WLVC, is retail operators, i.e. you local wine corner wine shop. The theory of the WBVC is that in order for a purchase to be made in wine, because of the huge variety of wines and the subjectiveness of “good wine” based on someone’s taste buds, every point in the
value chain must be satisfied. Another conclusion is that online wine sales don’t take off because they violate the WLVC and until they solve the issue of not having a trusted source, it never will.
Now, thanks to the study that Vinfolio sites, there is empirical evidence supporting the WBVC theory (from the Vinfolio post).
The most influential opinions affecting consumer retail wine purchases over $20 (the highest category) were “wine-knowledgeable friends” (72%) followed by retail staff (61%). See chart below.
The Wine Spectator (54%) has more influence than Robert Parker (41%) amongst high price point consumers.
87% of consumer respondents agreed with the statement “I trust my own taste more than I do the wine critics.” Despite that, 49% agreed that “I try hard to avoid wines with poor ratings.”
Interestingly, most consumers (42%) disagreed with the statement that “There is a big quality difference between a wine related 92 points and one rated 88 points.” Note: another 39% were undecided on this statement.
Pretty cool, eh? Until online sites understand that the essence of a wine purchase is very different from, say, a DVD player, they will never understand how to make the online wine market take off.
This seems to be a recurring theme with me lately. Understand your business before you start a venture. Why hasn’t online wine sales taken off? I have a theory and there is mounting evidence that I’m right…I’m proud to toot my own horn on this one because I truly love wine, understand the market, have dedicated my life to studying the application of technology to real-world problems, and would love to see the merger of wine and technology take this market to new heights.
Enjoy the Wine Life!