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DtC Wine Shipping: Gain Control to Ensure Exceptional Delivery Experience

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 16:53

Wineries have to care about customer satisfaction and retention. If customers don’t have  excellent experiences or their expectations aren’t met, they have a lot of options and could buy wine elsewhere. 

Wineries should strive to keep up with delivery expectations that have been set by companies like Amazon, Stitch Fix and Blue Apron. This can oftentimes be difficult due to the complex and highly regulated DtC wine shipping channel. Taking into account how the unique circumstances surrounding DtC wine shipping can influence the customer experience can help shippers assess how to optimize their own shipping outcomes and satisfaction.

Ecommerce growth and increasingly high delivery expectations

With the growing popularity of subscription packages and delivery apps, along with Amazon’s two day shipping and a rise in mobile ecommerce, it’s important to stay aligned with consumers’ evolving shipping and delivery expectations. According to Oberlo, ecommerce sales are expected to account for 13.7 percent of retail sales worldwide in 2019. 

With this number expected to grow yearly, considering your potential online customers and their delivery expectations is crucial. Oberlo also reports 80 percent of people who stop doing business with a company walk away because of poor customer experience. Making the delivery experience exemplary is a key factor in satisfying and retaining customers.

Growing DtC wine shipping channel

Customers already have high standards when it comes to home delivery experience, and shipping wine can add some additional complexities to the process. With requirements and regulations changing state-by-state, staying compliant while satisfying the customer can be difficult. 

According to ShipCompliant’s DtC Wine Shipping Report, the DtC wine shipping channel will continue its organic growth with new states opening up their borders to DtC wine shipping. Having a process and solution that grows with you and gives you the data needed to analyze fulfillments and shipments can be paramount to the success of your delivery rate.

Fortunately there are a number of steps wineries can take to ensure they delight and retain customers via a good delivery experience. They include centralizing the shipping process and data, increasing customer control and convenience, and continuously exceeding the delivery experience. 

A variety of options to increase customer convenience

Successfully delivering wine to customers on the first attempt is critical to a positive delivery experience. Giving customers more options and control of their shipment can increase the likelihood of satisfaction and, in turn, lead to customer loyalty. 

Offering a variety of shipment options, such as self-service re-routing to carrier locations like FedEx Hold-at-Locations (HAL), gives customers options to best suit their convenience. As a winery, sending personalized package tracking details at key shipment milestones and communicating any potential delivery issues can satisfy an engaged customer. 

Centralize process and exceed delivery expectations

Centralized processes can greatly improve a winery’s entire operation, including the delivery experience. With ShipCompliant Delivery Experience, you have visibility into all package statuses in a central place, automatic customer emails at key shipment milestones, and data to help you be proactive with customers — leading to improved customer satisfaction. 

The cloud-based solution helps analyze and identify any shipment issues, and assists in proactively reaching out to customers and re-routing failed delivery attempts. Minimizing returns and improving fulfillment performance with an analysis of your data can help create a first-class experience for your customers — from order to delivery. 

 

Learn more about ShipCompliant’s Delivery Experience solution today.

The post DtC Wine Shipping: Gain Control to Ensure Exceptional Delivery Experience appeared first on ShipCompliant | The software leader of the beverage alcohol industry.

BevAlc Roundup | Whither DtC Shipping of Alcohol, Wine and Climate Change, and Revamping Nonalcoholic Beer

Mon, 08/05/2019 - 13:59

We’ve turned the calendars to August this last week, meaning both that the heat will continue to impose itself in full force — and that fall is just around the corner, bringing the harvest and pumpkin-flavored beer (though if trends are to be believed, we should see plenty of pumpkin spice hard seltzers on shelves soon). 

But before we let the weather cool and move onto the busy upcoming season, we have a little more time to enjoy these dog days. Maybe you’ll do so with the Roundup? This week we look at how legislative proposals in Oregon are splitting the state’s different grape growing regions; also, malt beverage revenues are up so far this year, but largely due to growth in hard seltzers; and will robots take over as wine tasters?

In case you haven’t heard, the 2019 Direct-to-Consumer Wine Shipping Report is available for download. Get your copy today here.

Thanks for reading the Roundup this week. As ever, be sure to check out the rest of the ShipCompliant by Sovos blog for regular updates, and we’ll see you again in another couple of weeks.

Regulatory News and Discussions

TTB Newsletter | This week’s top news includes that our laboratories have achieved two-year ISO 17025 re-accreditation, our formula web page study is now closed, and we’re hiring in our Office of Analytics. TTB

What’s Next in the DtC Shipping of Alcohol | With only a few holdouts left, it seems like there might be an end to that journey in sight. And so we are inevitably asked, what next? ShipCompliant by Sovos

Legislative Proposals Cause Cracks in Oregon’s Wine Industry | A series of bills introduced in the 2019 Legislature that called for raising the state’s wine standards and enforcement have split opinions within the different wine regions in the state. Fresno Bee

Lawsuit Challenging Grape Laws For Minnesota Wineries Moves Forward | A lawsuit that challenges current Minnesota laws stipulating that wineries here must use a majority of Minnesota-grown grapes is moving forward. WCCO-CBS

No More ABC Stores? New Bill Would Revamp North Carolina Liquor Laws | House Bill 971 would allow retailers such as Walmart and grocery stores to sell liquor and scrap the government-run ABC stores in place. WCNC-NBC

A Clear-Eyed Look at the Future For Interstate Retail Wine Shipping | 37 states, even some that allow interstate winery shipping to consumers, still prohibit or limit interstate retailer wine shipping direct to consumers. Forbes

Industry Updates: Market Conditions and Developments

Leveraging Direct-to-Consumer Shipping and Sales Reports to Make Data-Driven Business Decisions | Direct-to-Consumer (DtC) reports are a great way to get data-driven information to help guide business decisions. ShipCompliant by Sovos

Beer Sales Are Up, but It’s Because of White Claw | Beer sales at retail outlets tracked by market research firm IRI are up 3.5 percent to nearly $19.5 billion year-to-date through July 14, 2019. VinePair

Why Napa Valley Needs to Start Talking About Climate Change | A winemaker makes the case that the time to start identifying solutions to Napa’s climate concerns is now. SevenFifty Daily

California’s Most Expensive Wines | The seemingly unstoppable price hikes for Napa’s top wines would appear to be running out of steam. Wine-searcher.com

China, Heat, and Trump: Why French Winemakers Are Having the Worst Summer Ever | The French wine industry on Monday weighed into an escalating spat between the Trump Administration and Paris over France’s proposed new tax on technology companies, saying: leave us out of it, S’il vous plaît! Fortune

Digestif

How Craft Brewers Are Redefining the Nonalcoholic Beer Category | Long stigmatized as characterless, alcohol-free beers are now being brewed with premium ingredients in a variety of styles. SevenFifty Daily

New App Says It Will Translate Wine Labels | Creators of a new AI application have said it will translate wine bottle labels into any language, but are industry experts convinced? Decanter

How Robot Tongues Are Measuring Taste For the Food and Beverage Industry | In a nice touch of irony, this inherently human sensory experience is being increasingly monitored – and replicated – by artificial intelligence and other technological advances. Forbes

When Will a Wine Label Backfire? | Tank Garage Winery caused a small storm on social media this week, when they released a wine with a pornographic label. Is there a place for such labels? Wine Business International

 

Request a demo of ShipCompliant.

The post BevAlc Roundup | Whither DtC Shipping of Alcohol, Wine and Climate Change, and Revamping Nonalcoholic Beer appeared first on ShipCompliant | The software leader of the beverage alcohol industry.

Texas Announces Upcoming Audits of DtC Wine Shippers

Fri, 08/02/2019 - 17:02

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) has announced that it will conduct audits of Out-of-State Winery Direct Shipper permit holders beginning on September 1, 2019. 

 

Per the announcement, the purpose of these audits is to ensure that the permit holders have been in compliance with Texas rules and regulations for Out-of-State Winery Direct Shipper permittees. These include payment of taxes, reporting on wine shipments, and not exceeding the limits of nine gallons per month and 36 gallons per year that the state imposes on how much a direct shipper may send to a single Texas resident.

 

While winery direct shippers are subject at all times to an audit by the TABC, that the agency is announcing this round of audits implies that many more permit holders could expect to be contacted by the TABC than would be typical. These audits will be issued at random, though the TABC notes that permit holders who have received non-compliance notices from the state should expect to have greater odds of being selected.

 

This notice comes at a time when many states are working to ensure that direct-to-consumer shippers of wine are complying with the regulations imposed by the state, though Texas is currently the only state to have announced a specific program to conduct this verification. 

 

More than ever, compliance matters

Such steps by states underscore the importance of staying in compliance with any and all rules a state imposes on you as a direct-to-consumer shipper of wine. Shipping  wine can be complicated, with laws varying state-by-state, and various reporting requirements imposed by states. We at ShipCompliant by Sovos are committed to enabling this market to continue to grow and thrive by ensuring compliance by wine shippers.

 

Request a demo of ShipCompliant, or discover how ShipCompliant gives wineries control over DtC compliance.

The post Texas Announces Upcoming Audits of DtC Wine Shippers appeared first on ShipCompliant | The software leader of the beverage alcohol industry.

Leveraging Direct-to-Consumer Shipping and Sales Reports to Make Data-Driven Business Decisions

Mon, 07/29/2019 - 14:08

Direct-to-Consumer (DtC) reports are a great way to get data-driven information to help guide business decisions. Leveraging data and trends like the ones reported on in ShipCompliant’s DtC wine shipping report and Wine Direct’s DtC sales report alongside a wineries specific brand and business can help make strategic business decisions. Common trends like most popular varietals, the average value of an order, and the regions with the highest growth combined with a wineries specific sales and shipping data can help create new insights and initiatives.

Napa plateaus, Oregon and Washington grow

There were some interesting trends and growth in winery regions reported in 2018. It seems California’s Napa County is hitting a plateau. Its increase in shipments was only 1.6 percent, while the average price per bottle increased 7.1 percent, triple the increase of the overall channel. While Napa was near plateau, Sonoma County grew 18 percent in value of shipments and overtook Napa as the region with the most shipped wine. Oregon took the spot for most dynamic when it came to DtC shipping and for the 7th straight year outpaced the market in growth. Washington outpaced the overall market in DtC channel volume, and the average price per bottle shipped decreased. Considering the above, growth in the DtC channel will continue to be organic and strongly correlate to the emerging regions.

Common trends and growing channels

Trends involving favorite varietals, average price, and average volume are all great things to consider when making business decisions. Rosé continued it’s 8-year increase, with 24 percent growth and 29 percent growth in average shipment value. The top five varietals stayed the same, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pino Noir, Red Blends, Chardonnay, and Zinfandel but Pino Noir overtook Red Blend as the second most popular. In 2018 the average price per bottle shipped DtC was $39.70. There was healthy growth in shipment value overall, increasing 8.9 percent in the past year. Consumers spent 12 percent more per order than previously, supporting the idea of steady and consistent growth to the market.

With average order value and volume per shipment increasing, it’s important to reflect on the channels available to support those customer demands. The wine buying experience is adapting to the tech-focused society we now live in. The tradition point-of-sale method of buying wine in store is no longer the dominant way. Purchasing through wine clubs or from the wineries’ website is becoming more and more popular, presenting the greatest opportunity for growth. A key takeaway from these reports is the importance of a strong website, online presence and delivery experience.

Wine clubs, website orders and complaint shipping

Wine clubs, website organization and ease of use, and strong social media presence are incredibly important when trying to increase DtC sales. Having a mobile-friendly version of the website is also important, as mobile visits increased to 49 percent of total traffic in 2018, up from 44 percent in 2017. A website can create a wealth of data and information that can help support future decisions, like average order value, time spent on site, and frequencies of visits. Using that data with leveraging CRM information, search engine optimization, and customer feedback a winery can best market themselves to generate demand.

With the increasing popularity of online ordering and wine clubs, it’s important to consider the shipping process. Staying compliant when shipping wine can be complicated with rules changing state-by-state and new sales tax regulations being passed regularly. Having a solution to stay compliant in DtC shipping to ensure positive delivery experience, stay up to date on state and federal taxes and regulations, minimize risk and centralize processes is instrumental in creating happy and loyal customers. With more states opening to DtC shipping, customer demands growing in website and wine club orders, and winery regions continuing to expand and diversify it’s important to have solution that can simplify and streamline the entire direct-to-consumer process.

 

Request a Demo of our ShipCompliant Direct today.

The post Leveraging Direct-to-Consumer Shipping and Sales Reports to Make Data-Driven Business Decisions appeared first on ShipCompliant | The software leader of the beverage alcohol industry.

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