THREE BEST OPTIONS TO MEET YOUR ONLINE WINE SHOPPING NEEDS
Online shopping sales skyrocketed during the shutter-in-place pandemic, including shopping for wine. But with that came a lot of questions about what are the best options for shopping for wine online?
We’ve broken out a few of our favorite online wine shopping resources to help you pick your pairing.
Online Wine Retail
Wine.com claims to be the top-rated online wine store in the USA with the largest inventory available. In fact, Wine.com earned Wine Enthusiast magazine’s 2019 Wine Retailer of the Year accolade. You can shop in nearly every region, varietal, blend, style, and price point. You will find niche and boutique wines alongside big names and critically-acclaimed wines.
After a search in several regions and categories, I found their prices to be a bit more expensive than local retail but free shipping and convenience are attractive.
Wine.com is available on your desktop and in a smartphone app. Sign up for their StewardShip program for unlimited, complimentary shipping for just $49.99 a year.
Online Wine Clubs
There as many wine clubs as there are grape varietals…and that’s a lot.
Branded Wine Clubs. Every organization from National Public Radio, and The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal, to niche wine companies like DryFarm Wines, NakedWines, and FirstLeaf, are launching wine clubs that refine the online buying experience. Not to mention popular individuals such as Gary Vee and Martha Stewart.
Some clubs employ careful research and customer questionnaires while others support your favorite causes and charities. Wine clubs may be focused on specific wines, like Champagne or award-winning Blue-Chip wines, while others focus on Natural-leaning organic and “clean” wine categories.
Wine clubs do the work for you by curating the perfect collection based on your interests. You can buy into clubs at different price-levels, wine style preferences, and quantities delivered.
If your interest lies in red-wines only and you want three bottles a quarter, or if you prefer international wines and want six bottles a month, there will be a club and a membership level tailor-made just for you.
Winery Wine Clubs. Aside from broad-selection wine clubs, many wineries have their own clubs too.
If you are devoted to your favorite brands, check into their custom clubs. You can sip on your favorite wines all year and will have access to club member exclusives, special pricing, first-dibs on new releases, and other insider perks of membership.
It is important to find the best club for you, by inventory diversity, selection, price point, and membership requirements. Some clubs require an ongoing membership while others offer single purchase options.
Not all clubs are created equal and inter-state shipping can be problematic. Check individual shipping policies before purchasing your membership and wines.
Wine Shipping Considerations
Keep in mind that each state has its own shipping laws for adult beverages, and a signature is required on your deliveries. Due to individual state laws, most online wine vendors cannot ship wine to the following states: Alabama, Delaware, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Utah, and South Dakota.
Joining a weekly online wine auction at WineBid.com is an exciting way to enhance your cellar and find the perfect wine you’ve been hunting for. Bidding on wine online is thrilling! The anticipation of following your bids and beating out the competition is as exhilarating as the item you’ve just won.
Are you sitting on a collection of wines that no longer brings you joy? Do the wines you selected years ago stagnate in your cellar or do they still excite you? Your tastes and lifestyle have changed. You are holding on to wines that no longer match your style. It is time to let them go. You may want to look into selling them. You might even earn a tidy profit or find new wines to invest in.