Starting an online wine business can be exciting and scary. However, if done right, the online wine shop can be profitable. To start an online wine business, identify a niche and conduct market research. Navigate the licensing, permits, and taxes and create a simple but functional website.
Whether you have your wine production plant or a dropshipper, focus on delivering quality service.
Starting an online wine business requires a great deal of effort, dedication, and most importantly passion.
If you're interested in how to sell wine, or selling wine online, you can use this page as a guide for everything you'll need to know.
Want to learn more? You can check out our full guide on how to start an online wine business ➜
|Min Startup Costs||Max Startup Costs|
|Office Space Expenses||$0||$7,000|
|Employee & Freelancer Expenses||$151||$352|
|Business Formation Fees||$5,600||$20,400|
|Training & Education Expenses||$0||$1,000|
|Advertising & Marketing Costs||$0||$1,900|
|Food Business Expenses||$300||$1,400|
|Total Startup Costs||$6,786||$52,111|
|The Midwest's Wine, Spirits & Beer Store||binnys.com||#92,544|
|ABC Fine Wine & Spirits||abcfws.com||#139,472|
|Astor Wines & Spirits||astorwines.com||#146,559|
|Buy Wine Online in Australia @ Just Wines||justwines.com.au||#172,193|
Pros & Cons
|Flexibility||You can put as much time into the business as you'd like. If you like the work and have some initial experience, you can start small and manage all aspects of the business on your own.|
|Ability to start your business from home||It's not necessary to have a physical storefront or office space to get your business started. You can do everything from the comfort of your own home, at least in the beginning!|
|Rewarding work||Starting a online wine business can be really rewarding work. After all, you are solving an immediate issue for your customer and you're working on something you truly care about.|
|Scalable||With businesses and processes changing daily, there will always be demand for new features, products and services for your business. Additionally, there are several different business models and pricing tiers you can implement that will allow you to reach all types of customers.|
|Meaningful business connections||You never know who you will meet as a online wine business. This could be the start of an incredible business opportunity!|
|High customer retention rates||Once a customer invests in your product, they've invested their time and energy to utilize your product/service which is highly valuable to them. Typically, your product or service becomes indispensable to your customer.|
|Finding The Right Supplier||Most businesses in this space go the supplier/manufacturer route, which isn't a bad thing! However, finding the right supplier can take a lot of time, energy and trial/error. If done properly, this process can save you months (if not years) of time and energy. More on this below in the "finding a supplier" section.|
|Motivation of employees||If you plan to have a sales/content team on board, finding creative ways to motivate them can be a challenge. It's important that you're able to offer great incentives and a good work environment for your employees.|
|Niche Market||A niche business is not necessarily a bad thing, in fact, it can be the key to your success. However, it can be more challenging and time consuming to find the perfect niche market and target audience.|
|High overhead expenses||With starting an online wine business, there are overhead expenses that come with selling a physical product. You will want to make sure you strategically budget for these overhead costs. We discuss this more in the startup costs section below.|
|You may need to charge sales tax||If you are selling your products in various states, you may be required to charge sales tax. Although this may not impact your financials specifically, it can be a headache to create a process and procedure for this. To learn more about sales tax, check out [this article](https://www.thebalancesmb.com/do-i-need-to-collect-sales-taxes-in-my-state-398913)|
|Time commitment||With starting an online wine business, all responsibilities and decisions are in your hands. Although this is not necessarily a negative thing, work life can take over at times. This can place a strain on friends and family and add to the pressure of launching a new business.|
Affiliate marketing is a great way to bring in a new revenue stream, especially when you don't sell products or services.
Simply put, an affiliate program is an agreement where a business pays another business or influencer ("the affiliate") a commission for sending traffic and/or sales their way.
The affiliate typically gets a unique link where clicks and conversions can be tracked.
Word of mouth
Word of mouth is when a consumers reflects their interest in a company’s product or service in their daily dialogues.
Therefore, word of mouth advertising is essentially a free advertising triggered by the customers experience.
According to Nielsen, 92% of people trust recommendations from friends and family.
Therefore, in today’s hyper-connected world, a single recommendation through a word of mouth can have a huge impact to your business.
Social Media Advertising
Social media advertising is the use of social media platforms to connect with your audience with the objective to build your brand, increase sales, and drive website traffic.
According to Oberlo, approximately 48% of the global population use social media, and the number is ever-growing.
Therefore, social media allows brands access to cost-effective advertising by enabling them to interact with a large audience.
Hey! 👋 I'm Pat Walls, the founder of Starter Story.
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