The internet – more specifically company websites – is becoming an increasingly important part of successfully promoting and selling your wines.
More than one year after the outburst of the COVID-19 pandemic this is even more so than ever. With the hospitality sector and even entire countries still more or less locked down, producers need to find new ways to address and attract their customers, many of whom are working from at home, from behind their desks.
Even during this pandemic, people are choosing to enjoy wine as part of their lifestyle – maybe even more so than previously. And being stuck at home with not much to do and with money to spend, people zoom in on the internet and online shopping, which has really caught on during the pandemic – be it clothes, electronics or wine – and wine producers absolutely need to be prepared for that development, as this trend is not going to go away.
In fact, online presence might simply be about surviving!
For Hungary, still striving for worldwide recognition, this is of no less importance. You can’t bring winelovers to Hungary these days, but you can bring the wine and knowledge of the wine to the winelovers. Savvy and increasingly more curious and adventurous winelovers, always on the look for the next glass or bottle of high-quality wine.
Never before has the world been more open to embracing lesser-known countries, regions and varieties than anno 2021.
For this reason, the Interwine Awards, initiated by http://www.hungarianwines.eu, is a really important initiative as it offers the best company websites of the Hungarian wine industry a well-deserved place in the limelight.
Hopefully other wine producers will ‘see the light’ and focus more intensively on this highly important aspect of the business.
52 wineries entered the competition, and their websites were judged on several aspects such as layout, user friendliness, photos, wine descriptions, texts, amount of information, webshop and SEO.
20 wineries made it to the final round with 5 more joining them based on votes from their followers.
These 25 finalists were judged by an international jury including Lucy Shaw of Drinks Business, Don Kavanaugh of Wine Searcher and Andreas Larsson (Best Sommelier of the World 2007, ASI).
“Overall, I found the quality to be very high – much higher than I expected and much better than many places (France in particular). I was impressed that some actually translated their sites professionally rather than simply leaving it to Google to do automatically. I thought they all succeeded in their main aim – they made me absolutely desperate to visit the wine regions of Hungary!”, Don Kavanaugh commented upon having evaluated websites.
At the end the winners were:
1st: Sauska (Villány/Tokaj)
2nd: Tóth Ferenc Winery (Eger)
3rd: Heimann Family Estate (Szekszárd)
If the objective of a company website of a wine producer was to make you want to purchase the wines and visit the winery, family owned and operated Sauska succeeded in doing so. A really appealing layout, lots of information in English, beautiful photos that really make me want to visit Hungary and the exciting regions of Villány and Tokaj.