After almost 8 years, I have decided that my Wine Blogging journey has come to an end. Thanks to all the readers, PR staff, and fellow wine bloggers that supported me through this journey. I have a few posts to finish up and will explain a bit more, but basically this forum has run it’s course in my life and I am ready to move on. I have valued the feedback I have received and thank you all for your support. Stay tuned for a few more posts with the most valuable wine lessons I’ve learned, tips for wine bloggers, and some final reviews and notes from recent tastings I have attended.
It was announced today that wine.com has released it’s API, which is the framework that allows third party websites to link to it’s extensive online database. This means that some wine related website’s will choose to incorporate information from Wine.com into their site, allowing for more extensive information to be delivered directly to the end user. Think of what Google maps has done for the internet. There are an untold number of implementations of Google’s API on a hoard of different website’s. Wine.com is hoping to do the same thing.
But how many people actually buy wine through online retailers? According to a 2008 study by Vinquest:
U.S. wineries seem to think they sold about 2% of their wine through online wine retailers in 2007. Total sales through this channel were likely in the $200 to $400 million range for 2007
Not much when you look at the overall picture. There is definitely a lot of room for growth in the area. But is this what the average wine consumer wants? Or is it easier just to pick up a bottle from the local merchant or megamart and not have to wait or worry about shipping?
Looking for a way to manage your wine cellar online? You might want to check out the just launched Vinut.com, a slick new web application that is easy to use and accessible via your browser from your desktop or smart phone. The site, available in English and German, is the brain child of Joseph Keitgen, a web developer and passionate Shiraz fan from the Ahr Valley in Germany.
Although some of the edges need a little bit of polishing, the function and simplicity of the site make it very user friendly. Vinut also employs some great features like a printable formatted PDF of your cellar, printable labels, CSV exports, and a search engine that matches your wines with all the data on the winery. Another cool feature is the ability to send a text message to the service when you drink a wine to remove it from your drinking cellar, thanks to a unique label and code that you can place on all of your bottles. Not bad.
Are you having trouble finding a bottle of wine you’ve been meaning to purchase? Do you like shiny Web 2.0 website ‘s with a clean look and snazzy interface? Then look no further than Vinquire.com, a wine search engine that also offers user wine reviews, tailored wine recommendations and more. According to the press release that went out today, the search engine looks at 3,300 U.S. wineries and retailers and inventories over 500,000 wines, enabling users “the ability to find virtually any wine at competitive prices. ”
If you haven’t uploaded your wine cellar to an online tracking system yet, now is a great time to make the leap, thanks to a new free site: Cork’d. Created by a couple web gurus, this site is built on the latest Web 2.0 technology, and offers some great features. Adding your cellar inventory is as easy as searching the database to find wines that have already been added by other users and adding them to your own collection. The rating system relies on a simple five star system. The site has already attracted over 4000 users, and 3.2 million page views, probably thanks to the celebrity status in the design world of Dan Cederholm from SimpleBits and Dan Benjamin of Hivelogic, the programmers responsible.
(Tip: When you sign up, add me as a drinking buddy, just do a search for my name.)