Wine drinkers trust merchants over bloggers
Independent bloggers are one of the least trusted sources for wine information in the UK, USA and France, according to research published by the Wine Intelligence.
The report finds that 50% of wine consumers trust the advice given over the counter by a wine merchant, compared to one in five who trust what independent bloggers have to say about a wine.
In the US, wine merchants are even more revered, with 80% of consumers surveyed saying they trust wine merchants.
In France only 10% of wine drinkers seeing independent bloggers as a trusted source.
The internet, however, is seen as a trusted medium for information about wine. Some two thirds of the US regular wine drinkers surveyed now look for wine information online, with one in three using social media as a source.
The UK and France are a little less wine active online, with just under half the wine drinking populations in these countries using the Internet for wine information and 16% using social media.
In the UK supermarket websites are seen as the most popular online source about wine, whilst in France consumers prefer to go to branded websites.
In the US it is websites run by wine shops, newspapers and smaller wine producers that are the most used online sources, with supermarket websites ranking below Facebook.
Jean-Philippe Perrouty, research director at Wine Intelligence, said: "We have known for some time that consumers trust people closest to them for recommendations about wine. This data shows the power of the internet as a way of leveraging this trust as the consumer's search for wine knowledge moves online.
"It looks as if the trust levels built up over time by local wine merchants are transferring into the growing power of the Internet, while word-of-mouth recommendations are also migrating into the Facebook era. Clearly bloggers will have a role to play in this new world, but this research shows how important it is to build up trust levels among your audience."
* Wine Intelligence's The Internet and Social Media report series is available at £1,300. Findings are based on the November wave of Vinitrac® - the Wine Intelligence global on-line survey of wine drinkers.