Blog
Dec 19, 2018

What Are You Brewing New Year’s?

Holiday Alcohol Header
Pop the champagne! We’re raising our glasses to holiday insights and bringing you the top alcohol choices for celebrating the New Year, based on 2017 sales data from the InfoScout OmniPanel™. It’s the biggest time of year for alcohol sales, and holiday shoppers favor heavy pours of Wine & Spirits. 

Throughout the year, we see a significant spike in alcohol sales for weeks containing or leading up to a holiday. In 2017, shoppers made the bulk of their Fourth of July, Memorial Day and Christmas alcohol purchases prior to the big days themselves. Weeks ending 7/2, 5/28 and 12/24 all showed higher alcohol sales than their subsequent holiday weeks. 

Alcohol sales reached their all-time high the week before Christmas (ending 12/24), then dropped slightly leading up to New Year’s Eve, indicating many shoppers may combine their New Year’s purchases with the Christmas haul. With over $3.3 billion in combined sales, the final three weeks of the year stand apart as the best span for alcohol sales.

Seasonal Tastes

Wine and Spirits are the top sellers in the weeks leading up to Christmas and New Year’s, outperforming Beer, which nets out as the top seller annually. Whiskey, Champagne and Cordial all prove themselves far more popular in this three week span than they are the remainder of the year, with brands like Bailey’s, Crown Royal and Jim Beam experiencing some of the most significant boosts. 

One-fifth of annual Champagne sales occur in the final three weeks of the year, solidifying bubbly as the indisputable champion of late-game comebacks. In fact, there were more Champagne dollars spent in the final four days of the year than in any single month January through October.


Who’s Buying What?

Last year between 12/11 and 12/31, Baby Boomers spent a combined $1.4 billion on alcohol products, more than twice their Millennial counterparts, who spent $609 million. Boomers may be the top spenders for now, but as Millennial buying power grows, we’ll likely see a shift in category rankings. While Boomers favor Wines and Premium Beer (think: Budweiser, Miller, Coors) for their holiday alcohol needs, Millennials tend towards High End Beer (Stella, Heineken, Blue Moon), Whiskey and Champagne. 

Baskets, Brews & Bubbles

Alcohol is only one aspect of the holiday grocery haul. What else are shoppers buying alongside their liquors? Across the board, cheese makes a strong showing. Champagne sales are often accompanied by Brie or goat cheese, while Premium Beers and Whiskey are paired with cheese dips and chunked cheese. Other top items purchased alongside these alcohol types are pita chips with Champagne, tomato and veggie juice with Premium Beer (Bloody Mary’s, anyone?), and ginger ale with Whiskey. 

Find out how Numerator can help your brand top the list for every holiday in 2019. Let’s meet to discuss how we can help you better understand how your shoppers behave during this, and every, holiday season. Click here to set up a meeting.