Online sales of alcohol will rise by two-thirds between 2020 and 2025, a market research company has claimed.
The International Wines and Spirits Record (IWSR) forecast that 16 markets across the world, including Britain, would be worth more than $42 billion in four years.
E-commerce has soared in popularity during the pandemic, as bricks-and-mortar businesses closed and shoppers turned to the internet.
IWSR analysis shows that online sales increased by 43 per cent last year, up from 12 per cent in 2019.
By 2025, e-commerce is expected to account for 6 per cent of alcohol sales – a tripling of 2018 levels.
“Given the pandemic and overall changing consumer shopping behaviour, it’s certainly not surprising that alcohol ecommerce is growing very quickly,” IWSR analyst Guy Wolfe said.
“E-commerce has clearly become engrained for many consumers, cementing its place as the third sales channel for beverage alcohol purchase.”
China has the highest proportion of online shoppers at almost 60 per cent.
Wolfe continued: “What’s interesting is to see the significant variations that have developed both across and within markets.
While wine is the favourite choice of most digital shoppers, those in China, Colombia, Mexico, and Nigeria are more likely to opt for spirits.
IWSR studied trends in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Nigeria, South Africa, Spain, the UK and the US.