How SEO Can Sell More Wine and Drive Tasting Room Traffic

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Over the past several years, we are seeing a shift in the way consumers are purchasing products. Instead of going into the store, consumers are shopping online. Years ago one couldn’t fathom purchasing shoes online without trying them on, but now from clothing to groceries and furniture to supplements, consumers like the idea of shopping online and having someone deliver the product to their door-step. Much like shoes, the idea of purchasing wine online was surprising. 

Physically tasting or holding a bottle of wine used to be a critical step in the wine purchasing process; buying wine used to be exclusively conducted in person in the store or better yet, a tasting room. So how can you take advantage of this growing channel?

To capitalize on the growth of online wine sales, it is important that your winery fully optimizes it’s website and strives for the best possible position on the Google search results page. As your page rank improves so will your online sales and tasting room visits.

Search Engine Optimization for Wineries

You might have heard of the term Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and know it is important, but aren’t sure if it will make a difference for your winery. The short answer is “yes, it will!” Think of SEO as the online version of a sandwich board and balloons outside your winery’s door. It’s the digital way of getting attention and telling the world you are open and have a great product to sell.

SEO means that your website is optimized with specific keywords that are important to your brand and potential customer that might be searching Google. Examples include your AVA, varietals you produce, farming techniques like organic farming, etc. SEO is competitive. Your winery’s goal is to have its website ranked high on the first page of Google search results. Doing this will bring valuable traffic to your business.

There is good news!  There are endless searches performed on Google, so your opportunities to rank high are endless.  Keywords are very competitive. Using terms such as “Best Cabernet Sauvignon” won’t give you a competitive edge.  The odds of being in the number one spot are next to zero. However, the more specific you can be and the more unique your business is, the better your odds are of ranking high. For instance, maybe you can rank high on “best organically farmed Cabernet Sauvignon in Paso Robles.” This is why it is important to develop key differentiators for your winery and pack your website with these terms. By the way, congrats to Adelaida Vineyards for being the top winery for this highly specific search term!

Why Search Results Matter

How does improving the SEO for your winery’s website impact website traffic? By improving your search results, you increase the exposure of your brand. Through the use of the right page titles, meta descriptions, and URLs, potential customers learn more about your brand and why they should buy wine from you. . 

75% of searchers select a result which is on the first page. SEO is ruthless, but the prize for winning is well worth the fight! The higher your winery result lands on the page, the lower your competitor’s result falls on the page. To keep your winery ahead of the competition and get the click before they do, it pays to fully optimize your search results.



Mobile, Mobile, Mobile

The fact that more and more searchers are using their mobile devices to find wineries and tasting rooms isn’t a big surprise. Once a searcher has found the business they were seeking online, there is a 50% probability that they will visit that business within 24 hours. Therefore, it is important that your winery’s mobile strategy answer search questions such as: “tasting rooms near me” and “what is the best winery in the area.” Through the strategic use of Google services, your mobile results will provide relevant information to searchers and drive traffic to your tasting room.

 

Ecommerce Wine Sales are the Future

More visits to your winery website means greater awareness of your brand and eventually increased sales. Online wine sales grow every year; during the first half of 2019 revenue generated from online sales took a sharp jump. A typical winery will generate approximately 10% of its revenue through the ecommerce channel according to the WineDirect 2019 Direct to Consumer Report, but that number is steadily growing. The average online order contains 7 bottles with an order value of  $282 which is up from $270 just four years ago. All signs point to the growth of online wine sales and wine brands will continue to compete for traffic. SEO is the  key to driving customers to your website!  


Start Now, so You aren’t Playing Catch-up Later

Online wine sales and mobile searches for wineries continue to increase but so does the competition. Wineries must embrace the efficacy of search and view SEO as an arms race. What was once strictly an in-person, hands-on experience has transitioned to the digital world,  driving foot traffic to your website is just as important as driving foot traffic to your tasting room. Only one winery will rank the top of each search page, so what are you doing today to get that spot?

Ready to Jump Into SEO?

Simon Solis-Cohen is the founder of Highway 29 Creative, a leading digital and creative agency serving the wine industry. He challenges clients to think about the future and constantly innovate. The agency chases data, not fads, and provides one-stop shopping for wineries looking to enter or jolt their direct to consumer sales. Their approach starts by designing and building a website focused on conversion (wine sales, club sign ups & tasting room reservations) and then dives into each digital channel with consistent and effective content and messaging. What to learn more or looking for advice? Shoot Simon a message at simon@hwy29creative.com.

Simon Solis-CohenComment