The Top Alcohol Tech Trends in 2022 – Beverage Dynamics
Technology shapes the present and the future, creating an ever-evolving landscape of change . As we all turn to our devices that keep us connected in an increasingly hectic world, business continues to advance alongside us. This is no different for the beverage alcohol industry. But trends come and go, certainly at an accelerated rate these days, and only time will tell which will become mainstays.
Which styles can you trust? We at Beverage Dynamics know that retailers are eager to try out the newest advancements. So we spoke to some of the galvanizing forces behind all these types of advancements in order to see how the industry will be changing, and what the future for drink alcohol retail technology may hold.
The particular move to mobile has crossed all business lines. Thirstie is one company we talked to that is taking full advantage of this migration.
“Consumers are central to driving trends within tech, ” says Devaraj Southworth, CEO and cofounder of Thirstie . “Now, on the heels associated with a two-and-a-half-year pandemic, they are more cellular than ever. With that, consumers are purchasing almost everything Ôon the particular go’ through their mobile devices. This has fueled the need for an improved and optimized checkout flow. ”
While the move towards cellular has been years in the making, like many other modern developments, it has been hypercharged by the Covid-19 crisis.
“The pandemic accelerated the modernization of a historically old-school, sleepy industry, resulting in retailers more willing to adopt new technologies to help them solve age-old store problems, ” says Cort Ouzts, president of POS Nation, a company dedicated to point-of-sales solutions for small businesses. “One trend we’ve seen is an increasing desire for retail owners to connect with their customers. The small merchants that survived the pandemic were able to effectively communicate with their customers plus humanize their own business. ”
“It’s the particular exact same mentality as the shop local movement that we have seen for the past several years, ” Ouzts adds. “Retailers are embracing technology and new mediums to expand their presence and voice. ”
Technology has facilitated the rise of mobile purchasing, with even sales at bars and restaurants now utilizing digitization.
“Digital payment has become a baseline expectation in hospitality, ” says Nancy Trigg, president of the POS provider Arryved. “Whether via QR codes, a mobile payment app or the virtual wallet like Apple Pay, today’s guests expect their on-premise experience in order to be tech-enabled. Bonus if they can order to their particular table, bar seat or lounge area via their own products. Folks who didn’t sell online or even to-go now do, plus as some businesses closed their own doors, others seized the opportunity to purchase turnkey businesses to expand. ”
Digital payment doesn’t just apply in order to the customer experience. As B2B purchasing grows within the market, new digital solutions are cropping up to address potential pitfalls.
Igor Ostrovsky founder and CEO associated with Koverly, highlights some of the tendencies he’s seen. “B2B commerce for beverage alcohol offers started to take root. Progress is usually being led by technology companies that simplify operations to allow businesses in order to work faster and buy smarter. Conversely, there is also a trend among drink alcohol businesses to create their particular own proprietary or ‘offÐthe-shelf’ B2B ecommerce and transaction solutions, and this is taking efficiency backwards. ”
These days, it feels like all we can talk about is the pandemic when it comes to discussing novel challenges. Obviously, the pandemic itself has been the particular largest hardship the globe has had to confront inside recent many years. But the health crisis offers also created many smaller hurdles in the alcohol sector.
“Two of our biggest difficulties have already been supply-chain obstacles and market awareness, ” says Ouzts. “Like seemingly everyone else in the planet, we have, at times, been simply unable to deliver our product to our customers as quickly as we’d like. ”
“The second challenge we’re facing is marketplace awareness associated with our product, ” Ouzts adds. “There are a few extremely large point-of-sale companies in the industry that will possess significant brand awareness in a variety of markets. These solutions tend to be more generic so they can serve a wide range of industries — rather than specializing in specific business types plus understanding those customers’ specific needs. ”
Market awareness is perhaps a bit more unique to the electronic solutions and ecommerce side of the alcohol industry. Businesses understand how to launch and advertise a new spirit, wine or beer option. But businesses such as Thirstie need first to educate the industry before marketing their product.
Southworth acknowledges this, commenting, “The challenges we now have faced stem from a lack of industry knowledge around what ecommerce is definitely and how it can best be utilized to grow a brand. For a long time, there has already been a notion around e-commerce in beverage alcohol that ‘if a person build this, they will come. ’ However, as any marketer will tell you, there is a level of effort that is required from brands to drive consumers in order to their webstores. ”
All the companies we interviewed are working to resolve problems that suppliers face on a daily basis. These include a host of issues, such because building a digital presence, measuring consumer data in real time, optimizing stocking levels and enhancing customer service.
Point-of-sale companies POS Nation plus Arryved have carved out niches for themselves inside the industry.
“POS companies have earned a reputation for manipulative sales tactics, disappointing support and costly, slow-to-innovate technologies. They put their own bottom-line ahead of the best interest of merchants and guests, ” says Trigg. “Arryved set out to reset expectations on what a POS partner could be. We’re community builders who prioritize relationships over transactions. All of us build features designed to improve the guest and staff experience — eliminating admin tasks with regard to staff that give them more time to get to find out their guests. Our pricing model is designed to support clients in building the greatest possible company. ”
“The issues POS Nation can be solving are usually directly related to the trends we’re seeing in the particular industry, ” says Ouzts. “We’re automating many associated with the old, manual processes of running a beverage retail store. Our software integrates along with most drink distributors plus automatically updates stock levels when products are delivered. Our software also uses artificial intelligence in order to optimize stock levels. It will automatically identify the increase inside sales volume and suggest ordering more. The common theme in all these process improvements is that we are eliminating the need for extra staff via automation. ”
This automation is in service of facilitating communication, according to Ouzts. “We’re helping business owners communicate with their own customers. Software has the built-in loyalty program and allows companies to tailor the text messages they send an individual customer based on that will customer’s buying behavior. This personalization associated with highly customized messages helps small businesses humanize themselves. ”
Thirstie works to help retailers increase their online presence and get products into the hands of eager customers, even inside the era of social distancing plus shutdowns.
“Thirstie’s network associated with licensed merchants are fully integrated by means of our proprietary technology, and our platform helps increase revenue for retailers without having to perform any marketing services regarding their stores, ” states Southworth.
Thirstie also provides valuable insights to merchants. “Consumer data is in the forefront of exactly what Thirstie offers. Historically, given the three-tiered system, manufacturers did not possess access to data. We all provide brand names with user data (who is buying, what they are purchasing, how these people are purchasing) attribution information (where customers are coming from) plus behavioral data (how consumers are interacting with products and the particular overall digital experience). ”
“Thirstie furthermore provides our own brand partners with persona-level data, essentially creating profiles for each consumer type and breaking down where they live, how much money they make and what type of shopping experience they prefer, ” he adds. “This allows brands in order to not only more efficiently reach brand new consumers, but the right type of customers and the opportunity to re-target consumers with new offerings plus products. ”
City Hive is another company making full use of client data . They provide full package ecommerce options to businesses. “In many cases, beverage retail proprietors do not have the time or expertise around implementing ecommerce and marketing experiences into their particular day-to-day workflow, ” says Monika Figura, Director associated with Customers Success. “City Hive has been able to solve this problem by offering website and application builds, automated weekly advertising programs that highlight the stores best sellers plus an easy way to implement on the internet promotions and loyalty programs with minimal effort. In the near future, professional design, marketing and advertising services executed by experts of the platforms will be available to add upon as a feature from the system. ”
Koverly targets necessary B2B transactions inside the business. “Koverly saves businesses time managing bills and increases profits plus cash flow along with more time to pay, ” Ostrovsky claims. “[The company] also reduces time businesses spend paying expenses with streamlined accounting automation. ”
We have only touched on the particular beginning of what technology is poised to modify within the market within the yrs ahead. So, what’s next?
According to Southworth, “The demand for branded ecommerce webstores will certainly continue to increase. While on-line marketplaces will always have a place in our sector, brands will more heavily invest within their very own electronic storefronts and experiences. ”
Nothing will certainly ever replace the in-person experience of going to your local drink retailer in order to talk about different flavor profiles or even hard-to-find bottles of whiskey. That experience is since much why local suppliers exist as anything. But that doesn’t mean beverage retailers can ignore the changing landscape in front associated with them, cautions Ouzts. “The common denominator for successful solutions is certainly that these people must be easy to make use of for customers, ” he says.
Trigg puts it succinctly: “We see the long term of e-commerce as being deeply connected to the onsite experience intended for merchants of all shapes and sizes. ”