Selling your beverages in-store: getting out of the box

Even though e-commerce is gaining its popularity in beverage industry, the biggest portion of sales still come from in-store shopping. Different distribution channels have their particularities, however shall we focus on larger retail stores such as supermarkets this time?

Competition in beverage industry is so big and getting into known supermarkets is sometimes a great deal of an achievement. Nevertheless selling your beverages in supermarkets means high competition for a place in a shopping basket, not only among other beverage products but also among many other kinds of goods. Obviously, getting on the shelves is not enough, the biggest challenge of all is to stand out and attract attention. No matter how good your product may be, if shoppers do not notice it, you are done, therefore it is always a good idea to invest in exceptional packaging design. However there are more good ideas worth considering.

Observe how shoppers behave

There are lots of measuring techniques that allow you checking how people buy your product or products similar to yours, however you may not always have resources for that. A pretty good alternative is to spend some time in some of the retail points observing how people buy beverage products. How much time they spend selecting? What catches their attention first? Do they seem to hesitate and take their time to consider what they’re about to purchase? Do they check the ingredients and nutrition information? How do they pick unknown and new products? How do they react to promotions?

The key point here is that no matter how much information you may gather surveying people and asking how they behave or would behave in certain circumstances, the most valuable data would still be received observing them in real life situations. And that’s not because people would be lying or hiding something from you, it’s because some of the decisions are made irrationally without putting much thought into them.

By the way, if you are having a focus group in order to figure out what packaging to pick, what flavors, communication or other aspects to put emphasis on, do not just read the report but also observe how people behave throughout the process. You would be surprised how much you can learn from that.

Try location based mobile ads

Yes, you can boost in-store sales with the help of smart phones. This can be done via various tools such as xADs or well familiar Google AdWords. Not so long ago Facebook has also introduced so-called local awareness ads which are shown depending on viewers’ location. When the person is somewhere nearby the ad would be more relevant to him or her and therefore is more likely to encourage action.

With well-crafted messages and visuals, as well as some time spent on selecting the right audience, you are very likely to motivate people to check you out on-shelves in the near-by retail point.

Be creative when applying in-store marketing

Point of sales displays, retail media, taste tests, promotions and other means are commonly used by marketers in order to get product noticed in-store. However, there are sometimes so many promoted products that it’s still difficult to stand out. This means additional costs but not always satisfactory sales results.

A good way to stand out of the crowd and attract even those who had no intention of purchasing any kinds of beverages is by using the same well know methods, however doing that in a somewhat unexpected way. For example here’s a refrigerator with transparent LED screen which helps choose the most suitable drink:

This definitely catches shopper’s attention and encourages purchase by showing that that is the exact match for their needs. However, you one does not necessarily need new technology to stand out. I believe this display by Guinness did not come unnoticed by any of the visitors of the store:


I am sure you have seen many more examples of brands getting creative in-store. Is there something you really liked and feel like sharing? If so, feel free to get in touch directly or leave a comment below.

Author - Juste Akmenskyte

Justė Akmenskytė is a Partner Marketing Consultant in MyDrink Beverages. She is specializing in market-entry-related services and is helping business owners develop their marketing plans and strategies as well as improve their e-commerce performance.