How do consumers choose the wines they buy?

Many regions of the world have witnessed a sharp rise in wine consumption in recent years, and this trend is likely to continue. Consumers today must choose from an increasingly confusing array of wines, each sporting features intended to capture their eye and entice them to buy more. These features might range from an amazing quality rating and well-known brand name to appealing labeling.

  • Today consumers are faced with a bewildering selection of wines, all boasting attributes designed to catch their attention, stir their interest and encourage them to come back for more.’
  • Consumers assess wines on the basis of several obvious and less obvious attributes, with their choices heavily influenced by whether they are wine aficionados, complete novices or somewhere in between.’
  • Both subject knowledge and objective knowledge are equally important to wine marketers because what a consumer thinks they know and what they actually know about wine will influence the marketing strategy.’
  • ‘To a consumer, the price of a bottle of wine is not only about its affordability; it is also an important part of the wine’s perceived brand value and can add to (or detract from) its desirability.’
  • A wine’s brand is a powerful marketing tool because it evokes different feelings and emotions in people, which can be tapped through the interplay of words and images, and an interesting story line. ’
  • Even novice consumers, with limited practical knowledge of wine, constitute a distinct market segment because they display common tendencies when evaluating and choosing wine, which marketers should creatively tap into. ’

Wine producers and marketers must find ever-new and inventive ways to appeal to customers as the world wine market becomes more crowded and competitive. An important step in this process is to comprehend what drives consumers to purchase particular wine varieties. This study makes a unique contribution by exploring a neglected area of research, namely how consumers’ wine knowledge affects their perceptions of the relative importance of price, age, brand, and region of origin. The literature is replete with studies on the extrinsic attributes of wine and how these drive wine sales. It’s intriguing to note that even inexperienced wine drinkers make up a separate market niche because they share certain traits while assessing and selecting wines, which marketers should creatively exploit.

This study lays an important foundation for more in-depth studies into the influence of product knowledge on wine purchasing behaviour, taking additional attributes into consideration. Wine labels and bottle characteristics, for example, could be included in the product attribute mix as visual cues can steer consumers in very clear directions. In line with the global focus on terroir in wine, region did in fact have the greatest influence on wine drinkers when considering both novices and experts.