Morrisons' online site exceeding expectations

Morrisons online wine business has taken almost 40,000 orders since it launched in November and is performing better than forecast, according to the man who spearheaded the project.

Simon Harrison, strategy partner, was in a buoyant mood at the supermarket’s tasting in London this week, where 80% of the 97 wines on offer were new.

He said: “We knew it would work. You can't talk to as many customers as we did and then do someone which tackles their biggest issue in the category and then see it not work - it's impossible.”

Before the launch Harrison told OLN he was confident the scheme would help add £100 million to Morrisons’ wine business within three years.

When asked if he maintained his stance, he said: “I would be surprised if we don't go well beyond an extra £100 million in three years. 

“I think if we keep pushing this – because it's so relevant to customers – we will go well beyond that.” Morrisons is currently in the fourth week of a trial period that aims to determine how successful the Taste Test scheme the forms the backbone of Morrisons cellar would be in-store.

By answering three simple, non-wine related questions, customers are allocated a number from 0 to 12 which sits within one of the four profiles: sweet (0-3), fresh (4-6), smooth (7-9), intense (10-12).

The Taste Test is licensed exclusively to Morrisons for the grocery sector by developers Bibendum and will match customers’ flavour profiles against a range of wines.

The supermarket is considering scrapping the traditional format of merchandising wine by colour, country and region, and lumping wines from across the world and of varying colour starting at 1 and ending at 12.

Harrison said: “It's not a question of if we will roll it out in store - it's a question of how. We may merchandise our aisles by taste test number instead of by colour, country and region, or we may do something as small as shelf labels. After 12 weeks we will decide.”

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