Home Industry News Releases New Shoppers Drive Massive Alcohol eCommerce Growth

New Shoppers Drive Massive Alcohol eCommerce Growth


nielsenPost-Easter shift, Nielsen Beverage Alcohol Practice reports that total alcohol sales are up 26.4% in Nielsen off-premise channels for the week ending April 25, 2020 compared to the same week last year, and +3.6% from the previous week.

  • Wine dollar sales were +29.4% year over year (even vs. prior week). By way of comparison, spirits were +39.6% (+1.4% vs. prior week), and beer/FMB/cider was at +20.4% (+6.3% vs. prior week). Beer specifically is +11.9% (+5.9% vs. prior week)
  • Specifically, table wine sales in Nielsen measured off-premise channels grew 29.6% in the most recent week vs year ago (+0.5% vs. previous week)
  • Sparkling wine sales in Nielsen measured off-premise channels grew 9.7% in the most recent week vs year ago (-6.4% vs. previous week)
  • Despite the deep economic impacts, we continue to see an increase in the average price paid at retail off-premise outlets across all three alcohol categories, largely due to price/mix trading up activity. That increase vs. a year ago is +2.3% for wine.


(Source: Nielsen U.S.; Nielsen E-commerce measurement powered by Rakuten Intelligence)

  • E-commerce sales for total alcohol–and each of beer, wine and spirits categories–continue to skyrocket. 
  • Within the Alcohol department, wine accounts for close to 70% of dollars, while spirits is growing the fastest on a percentage basis, but all are up significant triple digits in percentage terms.

For the latest eight-week timeframe when COVID-19 heavily impacted consumer behavior (from the week ending 3/7/20 through the week ending 4/25/20)

  • Wine is +29.4% in dollar sales in aggregate (from our in-store retail measurement).
  • Wines from Oregon and Italy are leading growth/The $20-$25 price segment has led price tier growth in 7 of the last 8 weekly periods.
  • While very small pack sizes may not stand out the most in COVID-impacted times, canned wines continue to grow at about the same rate as pre-COVID, and the 375 ml half bottle is growing at percentage rates 3x higher than pre-COVID, albeit on a relatively small base.

“Off-premise alcohol gains continue to outpace those for total consumer packaged goods. And e-commerce is a big factor,” says Danny Brager, Senior Vice President of Beverage Alcohol at Nielsen. “Over the past 4 weeks through the week ending April 25, 2020, online sales are up between five and six fold compared to the same periods one year prior. Largely, this relates to a huge increase in the number of buyers going online to buy, with a secondary increase related to more items purchased per order.”

Nielsen COVID-19 general site: www.nielsen.com/covid-19

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