NielsenIQ: Offsite Alcoholic Beverage Trends During The U.S. Recovery Phase


September 1st – NielsenIQ alcoholic beverage expert Kaleigh Theriault recently spoke with Joe Tarnowski of ECRM to discuss sales as part of the COVID-19 “recovery” phase in the United States. See below for the latest information on offsite alcoholic beverages:

“For the remainder of 2021, we can expect a few key trends to continue. First, the movement towards ready-to-drink cocktails will continue, with sales exceeding off-site sales in summer 2020 and expanding to on-site channels as well. Additionally, RTD sales will start to gain ground on site as consumers view them as “safer” beverage options. The winter holidays will provide an excellent opportunity for cocktails based on spirits and wines, as additional buyers will enter the segment and make repeat purchases. In addition, although e-commerce sales are starting to slow down in all segments, it will continue to be a very important channel for the industry and online shoppers will continue to rely on the channel due to its convenience, its ability to compare products and its fluidity. Currently, 78% of searches on are unbranded, which means that today’s shoppers are looking for products based on their individual needs (i.e. to cater to the growing segment of health-conscious consumers at home. search for personalization – Client Manager NielsenIQ, Kaleigh Thériault

Brick and mortar

  • Offsite sales decreased -1.7% YTD vs YTD 2020
  • Off-premises sales have been declining since March 2021 (see attached slide)
  • Off-premises sales increased 19% in 2020 compared to 2019
  • Off-site sales increased by 18% in the current fiscal year compared to the current fiscal year of 2019
    • Spirits: + 32%
    • Wine: + 17%
    • Beer / FMB / Cider: + 14%
    • Basic beer: + 4%
  • Sales of ready-to-drink spirits have increased 14% year-to-date compared to 2020
  • Hard seltzer sales increased by + 18.7% YTD compared to YTD 2020
  • Hard seltzer sales increased by + 287% YTD compared to YTD 2019
  • There has been a 25% increase in the number of hard seltzer buyers in the past 52 weeks
  • Sales of non-alcoholic beers, wines and spirits have increased by 35% since the start of the year

In line

  • Online sales of alcoholic beverages decreased by -5.4% in the current fiscal year compared to the current fiscal year in 2020
    • Spirits: -6.2%
    • Wine: -8.7%
    • Beer: + 7.5%
    • FMB: + 21%
  • Wine represents 65% of online alcohol sales in dollars

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