Last month, we released our annual report on the state of the direct-to-consumer wine shipping channel with our partners Wines & Vines. The report is produced using Wines & Vines’ algorithm, which extrapolates data from the extensive ShipCompliant by Sovos transaction library.
This year’s report demonstrated continued explosive growth in the channel, as the total value of shipments grew 15.5 percent to top out at $2.69 billion. A significant factor in this growth is the growing number of states that allow direct wine shipping; Pennsylvania in particular can claim much of the credit.
Here are four of the more interesting data points concerning shipping to individual states:
1. Pennsylvania became a top-10 destination in 2017. After the state made direct-to-consumer shipping legal in 2016, Pennsylvanians took advantage of the first full year of their newfound ability to order wine through the channel, ordering 152,000 cases. While it was edged out by Georgia for the final spot in the top ten in terms of value, Pennsylvania saw a 158 percent increase in the volume of shipments and 3 percent of the total DtC shipments made, landing itself the 10 spot in that category. Our report projects further climbing of the rankings in Pennsylvania’s future.
2. Seven of the top 10 shipment destinations are also top-10 producers. Residents of California, Texas, New York, Washington, Florida, Illinois, Oregon, Colorado, Virginia and Pennsylvania were all faithful to their local wineries in 2017. It stands to reason that the largest producers would generate great receiving numbers as well, but another interesting point to note is that tourism plays a big role in DtC sales. In fact, most sales in the channel originate from tourism, and each of these seven states has a number of well-travelled tourist destinations.
3. Massachusetts and Arizona saw explosive growth. But it won’t be sustainable in the long term. Massachusetts increased its shipments by 25 percent, while Arizona increased its own by a whopping 49 percent. However, these large increases are likely due to state legislature giving the green light to direct shipping in recent years, and the markets are likely to stabilize in future years.
4. California is still the king — and it’s not even close. While many states experienced huge growth in 2017, California remained the dominant destination of shipments, owning 30 percent of the market share. The next-largest share? Texas, at 8 percent. It’s safe to say California will continue to put up numbers like these, so long as it continues to produce massive volumes of wine every year.
Be on the lookout for more entries in this blog series highlighting interesting or relevant pieces of data from the 2018 Direct-to-Consumer Wine Report!