For many businesses, handling ecommerce is unknown and tricky. Getting the online shopping environment up and running and then coping with all the systems can be a major headache.
Which is why wine.co.za built their new CellarDirect business, a (DTC) Direct to Consumer/Club and Trade shopping platform for wineries, launched in Oct 2019.
The uptake was fairly brisk initially, and since the beginning of March has seen an exponential number of requests to set up wine shops for wineries.
To date they have set up 34 winery shops, with a record setup time of 1 day. Ts & Cs apply of course.
The CellarDirect solution empowers wineries to have a platform through which they can then drive sales and leave the headaches of security, fraud checks, SEO, payments, customer liaison, wine club management, reporting and logistics to the CellarDirect team at wine.co.za.
Since the lockdown has been in effect, there has been a MASSIVE increase in orders through the individual winery shops as well as the CellarDirect.co.za portal shop, putting R1m directly into producers' pockets in May,
The news has drawn interest from the media, and co-owner Judy Brower has been widely quoted in the last 2 weeks, including an interview with The Money Show host Bruce Whitfield on Cape Talk / 702 - listen HERE to the interview.
Top 10 selling CellarDirect producers by value: (this changes every minute with orders constantly streaming in)
A great feature of the CellarDirect solution is that the wines are drop-shipped from the producer to the customer - so from a hygienic and health risk point of view - it could not be better. The wine leaves a sanitised winery, travels with a sanitised courier and gets to the customer with minimal handling.
Producers have full access to their back end dashboard of orders and stats, and it is interesting to see the top 3 wine varieties sold across the board are Shiraz , Sauvignon Blanc & Cabernet Sauvignon (neck and neck). Western Cape and Gauteng are vying for majority and interesting to see every province represented.
Good to hear from our Top 3 wineries :
Lourens Relihan from Darling Cellars: ''We are amazed by the success of the online shop, it surpassed our wildest expectations! This is something we would like to expand in the future and will become one of our focus sales channels. The CellarDirect team know the online sales platform and they are instrumental in our success thus far and its a pleasure working with them!
The Darling Cellars brand is a fast growing brand in South Africa and the amazing online sales shows that the South African customer is recognizing us and looking for good quality wines even in this difficult times.''
Philip Taberer from Avontuur: 'The battle against this pandemic has changed many lives forever and in our industry, it seems as if the way of doing business is going through a huge change. This is most visible in the way that consumers have realized the potential and practicality of online shopping. CellarDirect has helped facilitate this movement by creating an efficient e-client experience, and the resulting online sales growth has been remarkable. Never has digital marketing, branding and client experience been of more importance.
We have run specials, started fun online competitions and continuously reached out to clients via social media and digital platforms. The response to this has been heart-warming and given us hope. Keeping hope alive during this stressful time for wineries, workers and management in the Western Cape, is what keeps us going.”
Carlen Wahl from Bonnievale wines: ''For smaller brand owners the CellarDirect e-commerce solution offers a secure platform and takes care of the fulfilment - which is resource intensive at best. Also the margins taken by CellarDirect on the value of the total sale is in line with retail margins and very competitive compared to some of the other independent e-commerce shops. It has also been beneficial to be part of the CellarDirect communications platform, as this gives our wine shop and wines a broader reach.
We have tried various campaigns to either promote the shop or specific offers throughout the entire period, through social media or special offers and ensure that our offers are fresh and desirable.''
''We have managed to scale our technology seamlessly during this massive increase in orders and our staff has kept on top of every order. I have enjoyed working closely with wineries to maximise their return'' - says Kevin Kidson, the brain behind CellarDirect. “And looking forward to shipping the wines out from 1 June in Level 3!”
If you want to set up your shop - email us now - Judy Brower - or call 021 851 2737