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Elevating shopper engagement through contextual commerce in the beverage sector

Elevating shopper engagement through contextual commerce in the beverage sector

Revolutionizing consumer experiences with intelligent shopping solutions

bottle of Sonoma rosé on a wood table top next to plantations
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In an era where consumer demands evolve by the minute, contextual commerce emerges not just as a trend but as a necessity for Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) brands aiming to seamlessly integrate their products into the daily lives of their target audience.

Specifically, in the dynamic grocery and beverage arena, the question isn't whether in-the-moment shopping opportunities are viable but how brands can effectively capitalize on them to foster authentic customer connections.


The latest findings from the "Contextual Commerce Shopper Study" spotlight the potential of this avenue for engagement, underscoring the unmatched opportunities brands have to integrate into the consumer’s shopping journey in real-time.

  • Seamless integration: By embedding products into the daily lives of consumers, we foster a natural discovery process, enhancing brand visibility and customer loyalty.
  • Personalized experiences: Utilizing data-driven insights to tailor shopping experiences to individual preferences, revolutionizing how consumers engage with your brand.
  • Increased conversions: Contextual commerce reduces the friction in the purchasing process, leading to higher conversion rates and a boost in sales.
  • Innovative engagement: Through smart, contextual placements, we captivate your audience in moments that matter, elevating brand recognition and shopper satisfaction.

A new study sheds light

The latest findings from the "Contextual Commerce Shopper Study" in September 2023, a joint effort between the Path to Purchase Institute and Chicory, shine a spotlight on the burgeoning potential of this avenue for engagement.

Surveying 1,000 household decision-makers, who are regular online grocery shoppers, the study reveals a promising inclination towards contextual commerce. A notable 69% of participants reported weekly online grocery shopping, with a significant portion also indulging in prepared foods and beverages with similar frequency. These are the shoppers who might be open to purchasing new wines but haven't yet been made aware of all the available options.

The anticipation of increased online shopping activities in the coming months further underscores the growing relevance of contextual commerce.

Diverse shopping channels

Peeling back the layers on purchasing behaviors, the study highlights a compelling trend: nearly half of the consumers have engaged in contextual commerce purchases recently. While traditional direct purchases through retailer or brand websites remain predominant, an impressive 52% of respondents have diversified their shopping channels, exploring options like direct purchases through social media platforms and content-rich sites or blogs.

This adaptability presents a golden opportunity for brands, particularly in the beverage sector, to tap into a wide array of consumer segments, from Gen Z to Gen X, and influence spontaneous buying decisions.

Use in-recipe context to sell wine

Despite the openness towards integrating commerce experiences directly within recipes, several obstacles continue to influence consumer preferences away from online shopping. At the forefront, 43% of survey participants expressed a strong inclination to purchase groceries in physical stores; this sentiment was particularly pronounced among Gen Z and Baby Boomers.

Several shoppers highlighted the urgency of their needs, which could not be accommodated by shipping timelines (34%), or mentioned they were not immediately ready to prepare the recipe (30%). Furthermore, the deterrent of high delivery or service fees was cited by 31% of those surveyed. Trust concerns also played a significant role, encompassing apprehensions about data security and hesitance towards having others choose their grocery items.

Did you know? Outshinery provides unique wine Pairing Recipes for wineries looking to leverage this opportunity.

recipe card by Outshinery pairing an Oregon Pinot Noir with maple Ponzu seared salmon
Lange Estate Winery customers can make a perfect pairing with this Outshinery recipe pairing

Make your brand easy to buy

For brands and retailers aiming to leverage contextual commerce to boost grocery sales, consumers' preferences are crystal clear. The simplicity of finalizing a purchase emerged as the principal concern, prioritized by 70% of respondents. This was closely followed by the rapidity of delivery, which 65% of shoppers emphasized. Competitive pricing and the credibility of the brand also held substantial sway, each influencing 63% of the decision-makers surveyed.

Visual assets grab interest

Digging deeper, the study uncovers the digital nooks and crannies where consumers seek inspiration, with Amazon and brand websites leading the pack. Yet, the significant traction gained by content and lifestyle websites for browsing indicates a potent strategy for brands to deploy visually captivating content that not only inspires but also conveniently facilitates on-the-spot purchases.

The key drivers for engaging with product links or ads are notably the right mix of need fulfillment, enticing promotions, and the allure of novelty.

bottle of Monticello Sauvignon Blanc on an outdoor table with field flowers
This Stinson Vineyards wine is the center attraction of a tempting setting

Convert with impulse buys

However, the true power of contextual commerce lies in its ability to convert mere interest into impulse buys, with approximately 44% of respondents admitting to occasional spur-of-the-moment purchases. To harness this potential, focusing on what triggers these impulses—be it a product's unique appeal or the sheer convenience of online shopping—is crucial, especially when considering older demographics like Gen Xers and Baby Boomers who value convenience highly.

screen grab of the Penfolds website featuring Penfolds wine

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Build trust to sell online

Despite the burgeoning interest in contextual commerce, challenges such as data privacy concerns and the comfort of familiar shopping habits pose significant hurdles. Thus, for beverage brands eying success in this domain, building trust and ensuring a seamless, reliable shopping experience across diverse channels, from social media to lifestyle blogs, becomes paramount.

Building trust with online wine shoppers pivots on the principles of transparency, authenticity, and engagement. For vintners and wine retailers venturing into the digital sphere, showcasing detailed product descriptions, vivid imagery, and customer reviews is paramount. In essence, when wine brands succeed in marrying captivating storytelling with an unwavering commitment to quality and customer satisfaction, they not only attract but also retain a loyal online clientele.

Meet your customers where they are

Regarding the search for purchasing inspiration online, the survey indicates Amazon as the top resource, closely followed by specific retailers or brand websites and applications. Approximately half of the participants mentioned they occasionally look to content and lifestyle websites or blogs for ideas. Delving into the consumers' online behaviors, nearly 20% frequently engage with product links or advertisements encountered on the internet or through social media platforms. The primary factors influencing their decision to engage include products that meet a current need or offer a promotion (both cited by 57% of respondents). Other significant drivers are the discovery of new and unique products (42%), visually appealing product imagery or videos (41%), and familiar products or brands (39%).

small bottle of icewine among Christmas decorations and presents to position this wine as the perfect gift
Put your wine on the gift list by appearing at the ready at the right season

In conclusion

In conclusion, the shifting tides towards contextual commerce open up a realm of possibilities for beverage brands to forge deeper, more meaningful connections with their clientele. By leveraging the insights from the "Contextual Commerce Shopper Study," brands can strategically position themselves at the intersections of convenience, novelty, and authenticity, ultimately driving higher engagement and conversions in an increasingly digital shopping landscape.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How can my brand start implementing contextual commerce?  

Begin by identifying key touchpoints in the customer's online journey where your product can be seamlessly integrated or recommended. Consider collaborations with popular recipe sites, lifestyle blogs, and social media influencers in your sector. Equally important is ensuring your website and online shopping experience are mobile-friendly and easy to navigate.

What are the primary concerns consumers have with online shopping?  

Key consumer concerns include the immediacy of their needs versus shipping times, high delivery or service fees, data security, and the trustworthiness of having others select their groceries or products. Addressing these concerns by offering expedited shipping options, transparent pricing, and secure checkout processes can help mitigate hesitations.

How important are visual assets in boosting online sales?  

Extremely. High-quality images and videos that accurately represent your products play a crucial role in captivating potential customers. They not only enhance the appeal of your offerings but also aid consumers in making informed purchasing decisions, substantially increasing the likelihood of impulse buys.

bottle of Californian Pinot Noir tucked into soil with a person gardening behind it

Can contextual commerce really lead to impulse buys?  

Yes, contextual commerce has a significant impact on encouraging impulse purchases. By placing your products in relevant and engaging contexts, you tap into the spontaneous buying tendencies of consumers, especially when coupled with promotions or exclusive offers that cater to their immediate interests or needs.

How can I build trust with my online shoppers?  

Trust-building starts with transparency and authenticity. Detailed product descriptions, customer reviews, easy access to customer service, and clear return policies can foster trust. Additionally, engaging with your audience through social media and providing value beyond just selling a product can strengthen brand loyalty.

Where do consumers typically search for purchasing inspiration online?  

Consumers commonly turn to Amazon, brand websites, and apps for purchasing inspiration. However, a significant number also explore content and lifestyle websites, blogs, and social media platforms. Offering value and engaging content in these spaces can attract their attention and influence their purchasing decisions.

What drives consumers to engage with products online?  

Products that meet an immediate need or offer a compelling promotion are major drivers. Other significant factors include discovering new and unique products, visually appealing imagery or videos, and familiarity with the brand. Tailoring your online presence to address these factors can enhance engagement and sales.

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