4 Steps to a Profitable Cyber Monday for Your Winery

The holidays are just around the corner—now’s the time to capitalize on two of the biggest months for wine shipments: November and December. Whether splurging on fine wines for the Thanksgiving table or stocking up on holiday gifts, wine shoppers are seeking the value and convenience of the Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) business model provides.

In fact, there’s never been a better time to ship wine directly to consumers. The value of 2016 shipments topped $2 billion for the first time to reach $2.33 billion, according to the 2017 Direct to Consumer Wine Shipping Report from Sovos ShipCompliant. Driven in part by an increase in the average price per bottle ($38.69) shipped, there’s no question that wineries that plan ahead, create compelling offers, and leverage multiple marketing channels will position themselves to reap the monetary rewards.

Cyber Monday—the Monday after Black Friday—is the perfect opportunity to make sure your winery experiences a profitable holiday season. To help you plan your own Cyber Monday promotion, we’ve broken down the simple steps to pulling off a successful offer below.

Step 1: Pick the Right Promotion

When it comes to holiday shopping, wine drinkers are like every other consumer—they love a deal. To find a promotion that will entice shoppers while selling an ideal volume of bottles, look closely at your existing inventory and revenue goals to figure out your break-even point—and how many bottles you have to sell to turn a profit.

In addition to offering free shipping (which most e-tailers do as a matter of course on Cyber Monday), here are some sample offers to consider:

  • Free Gift with Purchase for the Holidays: Buy Six Bottles, Get Free Wine Glasses

  • Percentage-Off Discounts to Save Shoppers Money: Buy 3 Bottles, Save 20%

  • Access to Exclusive Varietals to Reward Wine Club Members: Special Pricing on Our Best Vintages of the Season

  • Bundled Wine Selections with a Theme: Special Package Pricing on Wines Curated for Each Course of Your Holiday Meal


Key Takeaway: Cyber Monday shoppers are less concerned with brands and are looking for special pricing and free shipping.

Step 2: Timing is Everything

To launch your winery’s promotion in time, we recommend you begin finalizing your offer, checking available inventory, and outlining your marketing plan by November 1. This year, Black Friday—when brick-and-mortar retailers offer huge, crowd-drawing discounts—is on November 23. Cyber Monday is November 26.

Key Takeaway: Begin promoting your offer at least two weeks before Cyber Monday—this year, that date is November 12.

Step 3: Tailor Offers by Audience

Most wineries have three target audiences: wine club members, customers, and new customers. You can tailor your offer to each of these audiences, encouraging customers to sign up for the wine club and get in on the holiday promotion, for example.

Sample Offers by Audience

  • Wine Club Members: Buy 3 Bottles, Save 20%

  • Customers: Buy 3 Bottles and Save 20%—When You Join Our Wine Club

  • New Customers: Save 15% on Holiday Order of 3 Bottles or More

Remember, Cyber Monday shoppers expect great deals, so if you can’t offer more savings, throw in a free gift like a branded tote bag or wine glasses.

Key Takeaway: The majority of your efforts should be spent on current customers and wine club members. The boost you may get from new customers will pale in comparison to the sales from existing.

Step 4: Get the Word Out

Now that you have your offer figured out by the target audience, wrap your promotion around a simple Holiday Gift Guide recommending your favorite wines for the season. It’s an effective way to add some added value and credibility to your promotions.

To drive awareness of your promotion, be sure to use any or all of the marketing channels at your disposal. Here are our best tips by marketing channel:

Email

Use email to provide exclusive offers to your best customers. To reach your different target audiences, you can segment the email addresses into wine club members, customers, and new customers. Be sure to send a sneak peek email to build momentum followed by a reminder email with a new subject line so it stands out in a crowded Cyber Monday inbox.

Personal Outreach

For your best customers—ones who spend the most—it’s worth calling them or sending them a personal email to make sure they don’t miss out on your holiday promotion.

Social  Media

Drive interest across your social media accounts by posting right before and during Cyber Monday. Before the promotion starts, encourage followers to opt-in to be notified when the sale goes live. Once the sale is live, post often, changing the image but using the same or similar offer copy to remind shoppers the special offer expires at midnight.

Advertising

To drive awareness and attract new customers, place ads on platforms like Instagram or in wine product publications. Be sure to target your social ads by region and demographics. Leverage remarketing in Instagram to offer promotions to people who have been to your website before.

Website

Finally, make sure your website includes the offer information on the home page and that your eCommerce platform is prepared to handle the influx of transactions that will come through on the biggest online shopping day of the year.

Key Takeaway:  Your messaging should reflect the time constraints of a one-day deal. Email subject lines and social media ads with a “time is running out” message will drive sales.

We hope you’ve found our Cyber Monday promotion tips helpful. If you have questions, feel free to reach out to us. Cheers to a successful holiday season!



Andrea Steffes-Tuttle