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December 2014 Data Released on 01.15.2015Special Events Drive Flash Offers HigherThree flash websites held special offer events in December and that pushed the month's total number of offers for domestic wines to 844 or 17% higher than the 722 total offers in December 2013. Invino's 313 offers for wines from 168 different wineries was the most by any website and several offers came during a sales event held Dec. 30.
Flash Reseller Offers » Month 12 Months December 2014 844 17% 6,234 15% December 2013 722 5,403
Wired for Wine had the second highest offer count at 110 largely from a special promotion on Dec. 28 and Last Bottle Wines had a two-day marathon of offers on Dec. 18-19 but its total offers in December were just 53 as many offers were for imported wines. Because Wines & Vines focuses on the North American wine industry, Wines Vines Analytics does not track flash offers for imported wines.
Flash Channel Still Growing
It’s been five years since the National Bureau of Economic Research declared the Recession was over, and yet the flash sales channel doesn’t appear to be coming to an end any time soon. Many in the wine industry considered the phenomenon of websites offering steeply discounted wines for a short period of time, or what came to be known as flash sales, as a short-term solution to get through the bad years. Now that those bad years appear well behind the industry, flash offers continue to grow. The total offers for all 16 flash sites tracked by Wines & Vines Analytics in 2015 was 6,234 or 15% higher than 2013’s total offers of 5,402.
While some sites, like Prince of Wine, have fallen by the wayside and others like Rue La La and Lot 18 no longer account for a high share of total offers, there has been no significant drop off in offers since Wines Vines Analytics first started tracking flash offers 2011.
Most Offers Still for Cab, Napa Wines
Cabernet Sauvignon is still the most offered varietal and accounted for about 25% of all offers in 2013 and 2014. Yet in 2014 flash websites offered 26% more Pinot Noir and the varietal’s share of total offers grew from 18% to just less than 20% while Cabernet Sauvignon’s share stayed the same.
The number of Napa County wines offered by flash websites also rose significantly in 2014. Websites offered 24% more Napa wines, which accounted for 37% of all offers in 2014. The number of Sonoma County wines was essentially the same in 2014 as 2013. While the number of Sonoma wines stayed flat, the number of wines from other regions in California such as the Sierra Nevada foothills increased by 37.5% and offers for Northwest wines rose 15% although those region's share of the total offers only grew slightly.
Invino continues to offer the most wines of any website and in 2013 and 2014 its offers accounted for 23% of all offers. The number of flash offers by Lot 18 has steadily dropped since the company announced it would be focusing less on flash and more on a wine club format. Lot 18’s offers fell 23% from 405 in 2013 to 314 in 2014. The two fastest-growing websites, by number of offers, are Last Call Wines which offered 39% more offers in 2014 and Last Bottle Wines that offered 50% more as its total offers grew from 191 to 287.