The Grapevine

Forget the Wine, Buy the Label

May 10th, 2017

Heretical advice, right? For a wine shop owner to buy based on the label rather the wine within the bottle? Maybe not so crazy, after all … [level-members]

While we’re certainly not advocating so complete a departure from stocking your shop based on your perception of value and marketability, there’s clearly something to be said for including labels in your evaluation. The trick though is sorting out whether your perceptions match your clientele’s.

A recent article on The Academic Wino website discussed a set of eye-tracking studies focused on wine labels. The results are worth the slightly geeky read even if there were some small sample sizes.

Most interestingly for wine shop owners is the finding that when wines were grouped together, the most time was spent gazing at the bottle just left of center in a group of 4. Since longer gazes correlate with a greater preference for the label, the longer the gaze, the more positively the bottle was perceived.

Unfortunately, a “nicer” label can overcome positioning – click through to the article for more detail – so we can’t just re-arrange the shop to guarantee more sales.

But the research clearly shows that we can test labels for similar wines at similar price points on our shelves. No reason not to give yourself every advantage you can in winning the hearts and minds of your customers! Plus, it’s kind of fun to run little experiments like that!