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Consumers Opt for Brick and Mortar for Beer and Wine

New ChaseDesign survey reveals adult beverage shopping preferences
Lynn Petrak, Progressive Grocer
Consumers Opt for Brick and Mortar for Beer and Wine
A new survey confirms that consumers like to purchase beer, wine and spirits in store.

There’s a spike in interest in buying beer, wine and spirits in-store versus online, new research shows. According to a recent shopping trends survey by design consulting agency ChaseDesign, almost 90% of all beer, wine and spirits purchases last year were made in-store, despite a pandemic-era uptick in home deliveries and store pickups.

More than half  53% of survey respondents say they enjoy browsing for beverages in person and 42% report that they like to physically pick up products to read labels and learn more about the items. In addition to being able to see their options firsthand, people appreciate the brick-and-mortar experience: 37% say they like the overall atmosphere in a store and 35% note that they miss being able to talk to store associates about their choices if they are scrolling online.

Although the coronavirus outbreak changed many shopping behaviors, consumers still prefer to buy adult beverages at retail locations. During the pandemic, 40% of those surveyed said they purchased booze online, but that number has now dipped to 35% and is trending toward the 30% pre-pandemic level, the ChaseDesign research indicates.

Those who do purchase beer, wine and spirits online typically order for home delivery. If people opt for pickup, only 13% say they shop for other things when going to the store to pick up their beverage items.

“The results of our shopper survey certainly support the need for both online and in-store as part of an overall solution in adult beverages. But overall omnichannel strategies should recognize shopper’s preference toward in-store, and be mindful of the trade-offs online purchases mean,” said Joe Lampertius, president of ChaseDesign.

He predicts that the future of beer, wine and spirits shopping will likely take place in a retail environment enhanced by digital technologies that improve the buying experience.

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