Wine tourism: more and more young people love visiting the cellar

The year 2023 marked a change of pace for wine tourism in Italy: experiences became more varied and companies equipped themselves to welcome visitors even on weekends (in 2023 +30% of businesses can be visited on Saturdays) and turnover from wine tourism services increased by 11%. These are just some of the figures featured in the “Wine Tourism and Direct-to-Consumer Sales Report 2024” publication, created by technology company Divinea to support wine industry companies and industry professionals to capture direct-to-consumer opportunities. sales and wine tourism through data analysis. A document that, in its final part, also involved the Catholic University of Milan in sustainability research not only from an environmental point of view, but above all social and economic and the impact that digital innovations have on this topic. especially with the adoption of a CRM tool.

“Does it make sense to invest in wine tourism? This channel is proving to be a sustainable economic lever for most Italian wineries, provided that the visit experience is conceived not only as a moment of welcome, but also as an opportunity to create and strengthen a lasting bond with the visitor,” says Roberto Villa, CMO and digital expert at of Divinea. “Our investigation, rooted in deep data analysis, highlights how investing in meaningful customer relationships during the winery experience translates into a tangible benefit: the ability to generate ongoing value and increase direct sales of products and services over time. From this point of view, wine tourism is not just an experience, but becomes a strategic pillar of the success and economic growth of the winery.”

The data in the report was collected anonymously by 350 client wineries that use the Wine Suite, CRM and marketing software developed by Divinea, and analyzed together with sales data from and Google Analytics metrics related to wine tourism experiences at divinea. .com in 2023.

Rapid change in the offer of wine tourism:

In 2023, the offer of Italian wine tourism changed rapidly, with wine companies proposing an average of 6 different experiences or events (in 2022, there were an average of 4.7 wine tourism offers). The opening days are also changing and the number of businesses that can be visited on Saturdays rises to 78.1%, i.e. almost +30% compared to 60.3% the previous year, while 54.2% of wineries are equipped to welcome visitors even in Saturday. Sunday. When it comes to time slots, the 11:00 and 15:00 time slots remain the most popular, although these preferences vary significantly across wine regions. For example, in the Prosecco DOCG area, over 30% of visits take place at 10:00 a.m., while in Puglia, more than a third of visits take place in the afternoon, at 4:00 p.m.


A new phenomenon: deseasonalization of wine tourism


Two factors encourage visits to wineries throughout the year. On the one hand, milder temperatures in autumn and winter, on the other, a growing number of companies that have developed targeted seasonal offers. The data confirms this trend: more than 25% of total visits were recorded between March, April, November and December (+4% compared to 21% last year). An important number that confirms the change in the seasonality of wine tourism, which historically has always been concentrated in the months from May to October.

More and more young people in the basement:

Another important fact is that, contrary to figures which show that young adults who drink little or nothing have increased from 31% to 44% (source: YouGov), pub visits are attracting more and more young people to the establishment. This is also confirmed by the fact that 43.8% of those who booked a wine experience in 2023 are between the ages of 25 and 34. We also find the 35-44 and 45-54 groups with 23.1% and 15.3%, respectively, who are often families. Although the nationality of origin of the visitors varies widely depending on the different wine regions, overall 2/3 of the visitors to the cellar are Italian and 1/10 are from the United States. European foreigners represent around 20% with Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and the UK together representing the majority and who are generally a particularly valued audience given that they often travel by car and tend to buy much larger quantities of wine. average.

On the topic of cellar direct sales, 76.5% of visitors shop after the experience, an increase from 73.8% the previous year. In addition, the average receipt for an order placed in a corporate store is €140, which is 19% more than in 2022. Online sales are no exception, reporting a 30% increase in the average value of eCommerce orders, rising from €141 (2022) to €184 (2023).

A fundamental aspect of the success of Direct to Consumer strategies is the adoption of a professional CRM that allows you to collect and analyze data about visitors to personalize offers and increase customer loyalty.

CRM Sustainability Research with the Catholic University of Milan:

At the end of the report, Divinea leaves an in-depth analysis that is the result of research commissioned by the Observatory of Sustainable Viticulture and Food and Wine Tourism of the Catholic University of Milan. The aim was to analyze the relationship between CRM, sustainability and direct sales in the Italian wine sector by evaluating its impact on the three dimensions of sustainability: social, environmental and economic.

Interesting information emerges regarding the driving role of the social dimension of sustainability for Italian wineries in the implementation of CRM software, especially the Wine Suite software: the data coming from the software plays a key role in creating community and promoting customer loyalty, especially after wine tourism experiences in the cellars. These activities help create brand awareness for the winery and subsequently make the entire operating area visible. When it comes to environmental sustainability, digitization of processes, facilitated by cloud-based programs, plays a vital role in reducing paper consumption, improving flexibility and increasing efficiency.

Finally, even in the smallest companies, economic sustainability manifests itself in the reduction of costs, especially in terms of time saved. In fact, the CRM platform allows wineries to organize their wine tourism experiences more efficiently with consistent time savings for the entire team.


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