3 Wine Trends That May Change How Wineries Respond to Supplier Marketing


by Drew Hendricks
Last updated Jun 30, 2021

wine trends

Last Updated on June 30, 2021 by Amy Geldean

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In marketing, there is nothing more essential than sending the right message. You can’t convince your target market that you can provide a solution if you aren’t speaking to their most pressing problems.

Wine producers must grapple with a rapidly-changing industry, and as a winery supplier, you need to do the same. One way to accomplish this is by following the latest wine trends. By staying up-to-date, you can work the shifting priorities of your potential clients into your messaging.

This short guide will introduce you to some of the big trends that are rocking the wine-producing industry. You’ll be introduced to three key wine trends (with statistics) that are already keeping your potential clients up at night:

  • The massive increase in online sales
  • Growing consumer demands for sustainable and socially conscious practices
  • The growing potential of wine seltzer and alternative formats

For each of these wine trends, you’ll get some ideas about how to craft your marketing messages to let wine producers know you can be a partner for their future. 

The massive increase in online sales

Direct-to-consumer (DTC) sales experienced explosive growth during the recent lockdowns. According to Winespectator.com:

In 2020, Direct-to-Consumer wine sales rose 27 percent by volume, the largest ever year-over-year increase.”

All of that growth isn’t just going to the big players in the industry, either. Online sales for small producers increased by 153% this year

This represents a significant opportunity wine producers can’t ignore. Shipping directly to wine consumers means small producers keep a larger share of their thin operating margins. 

They can also enjoy all the benefits that come with having a direct mailing list of their customers. You should expect wine producers to lean into this opportunity. They’ll prefer to build relationships with wine suppliers who can help meet this demand. 

What do wineries want to hear from suppliers?

One way to reach wineries that care about increasing their DTC capacity is by focusing on how your products can withstand the stresses of mail shipping. 

For example, if your glass bottles are thicker or more impact-resistant than competitors, make sure you emphasize this. 

Sturdier supplies mean fewer products lost to breakage, and by extension, fewer refunds and angry reviews that might harm a fledgling DTC sales initiative.

In addition, don’t ignore the opportunity to start offering supplies that help wine producers upgrade their shipping operations. You can offer attractive customized shipping labels or special packaging designed to protect bottles and other items.

Growing consumer demands for sustainable and socially conscious practices

Consumers are increasingly demanding that companies reflect their values, particularly when the environment is involved. In a recent poll, 87% of respondents said companies should integrate environmental concerns into their products, services, and operations.

Many wineries have already begun responding to these trends. Wine producers have already launched ethical wine initiatives to overhaul their practices. 

These overhauls include transitions to regenerative farming, the use of recyclable materials, and reductions in the number of waste products created.

What do wineries want to hear from suppliers?

The wine makers you’re trying to reach don’t want to be left behind. However, they may not know where to start. You can reach them with your marketing by letting them know you’re the partner who can help them take steps toward more sustainable practices.

Wine supplies made from recycled materials are a great place to start. If you carry any, you can advertise that fact. Your clients can highlight their use of recycled materials in their own advertising. 

Do you carry any wine-making appliances that are more energy-efficient than leading brands? Now is the time to start pushing that efficiency on the product pages and advertisements you release for those products. 

The growing potential of wine seltzer and alternative formats

The wine industry has received a lot of good news over the last couple of years, but one development has many wine producers fretting. Hard seltzers came out of nowhere to seize a significant portion of the market. 

Between 2016 to 2021, hard seltzer beat growth projections by an average of 128%. This growth cut into markets that were otherwise favorable to both beer and wine.

However, wine producers have already launched an offensive against this newcomer. Canned wine spritzers—a classic cocktail of wine and seltzer—are now being heavily marketed as an alternative that doesn’t require consumers to compromise between wine and low-calorie seltzers.

Canned alcohol spritzers have been around for a while. However, they’re enjoying new prominence as a prominent winemaker like E. & J. Gallo and Ste. Michelle Wine Estates rush new and relaunched wine seltzers to the market. 

Considering that sales of canned wines have jumped from $2 million in 2012 to $183.6 million in 2020, this wine trend is likely to remain strong in the wine world.

What do wineries want to hear from suppliers?

Wineries want to know that wine suppliers aren’t only there to help them with the traditional side of the business. After all, it isn’t just spritzers that have offered a new path to younger consumers. 

There’s a whole world of new formats out there. Canned wines, boxed wine, and single-serve containers have all experienced a sales renaissance in the wine market.

You need to let wineries know that they won’t need to find a new supplier and build a new relationship if they want to shift their operations to keep up with the vineyard next door. 

If you carry alternative packaging and machinery that can help wineries try new things, ensure you make your forward-thinking stock part of your marketing. Even wine producers who don’t need these supplies yet may be attracted to the potential.

Craft the right message by identifying the right problems

Wine producers can’t afford to be late to the wine trends that are rocking the industry. Now that you have some insight into the challenges facing them, you will be more prepared to send the right message. 

Remember that wineries need supplies that get their wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Pinot Noir, safely to consumers all over the U.S. They also have to adapt to consumer demands for more sustainable practices and more exciting formats. 

Let them know that you can be a partner as they compete for a brighter future.

If you’re looking for a way to incorporate these trends into your wine marketing strategy, book a discovery call today and we can help you send the right message.