The Grapevine

Mobile Apps to Help Your Retail Wine Customers

August 14th, 2013

The web has been a disruptor in a lot of industries, and certainly retail, including wine sales, has felt those changes as much as any industry. The rise in popularity of mobile technology – smartphones and tablets – has only increased the pace of change.

And while these changes can certainly be a threat, there’s also opportunity for savvy retail wine marketers.

This week, let’s look at some apps you can recommend to your customers that will actually help you to help them better. [level-members]

This isn’t an app, per se, but a feature of just about every smartphone and tablet out there. Encourage your clients to take snapshots of the wines they love at restaurants, parties and events, and bring them to you. You can source the wine and, with all the info on the label, recommend something similar if the wine in question isn’t available or isn’t in the customer’s price range.

Delectable and Snooth Wine Pro
Both of these apps offer similar picture taking capabilities and more, including actually identifying a wine by its label. The downside: they both have a “find this wine at retail” feature that is useful for the consumer, but not so helpful to us as shop owners.
This web service has an app that tracks wine events in your area. Encourage your clients to follow it. (And get your events series up and running and included on their calendar!)

Wine Notes
Wine Notes is a great way for clients to note what wines they like and what they liked about them. Encourage them to share that information with you and you can help guide them to other wines they’ll like.

All these tools can help you be a better resource for your customers. There’s no point in pretending they don’t exist and hoping your customers don’t find them. They will, and if you resist their efforts to better educate themselves – about wine, about retail pricing – they’ll go elsewhere.