There were (and still are) just two of us: Alexander and Dimitri, who started Organic Wine Club at the end of June 2016. It has been quite a ride so far, but first and foremost we are extremely grateful to everyone who supported us this year and here is a roundup post to outline what happened.
After about 6 months of working to secure a property, to set up first version of our website and to get all regulatory paperwork in place, we've got the keys on the 15th July 2016 and were ready to crack on.
Many people asked us why Organic Wine Club is different, will it survive quite turbulent economic times and here is our answer how we are different.
We’ve started blogging, our first posts were about organic wines in general and then followed by our most popular blog post so far - 6 Most Popular Myths about Organic Wines. We've got hundreds if not thousands of likes and shares on social media, glad to be of service!
Our first slogan was 'Drink Less but Better Wines. Drink Organic!'. We have prepared a few useful articles with advice on how to drink less with some tips. It was also used in our pre-festive guide to wine calories, alcohol units and sugars in wine.
Our in-store customers straightaway asked whether we are doing any wine tastings, and we've scheduled several momentarily. Our first trial one was a success, so quite naturally we've organised a bigger one for our opening evening, we are thankful for local authorities, bloggers and local community who visited us for our opening evening!
We have were diligently reporting about each tasting on on our blog. We have 12 wine tasting reports so far.
We have established some very exciting local partnerships with:
Pencil&Fork (formerly Cooking Your Spanish) with whom we've hosted food & wine matching courses;
Kingston and Guildford health food retailers 'Food For Thought', who have kindly invited us to come to their store to offer Vegan wine tasting for their customers; the collaboration also resulted in a few fantastic gift ideas: 'Make Your Own Chocolate' hamper to just name the bestselling one;
local high street retailers Mia Strada and Rose Spa with whom we've also joined forces to offer tastings and discounts.
We are looking forward to continue working with our dear partners in 2016!
In September we were invited to join forces with organic brand Plenish and contribute to their Organic September campaign, so we did that and created our own promotion to celebrate that month too! Here is our Organic September page.
As it started to be a bit complicated and robust when looking at our expanding range of organic, vegan, natural and biodynamic wines, we’ve developed a quick guide on ‘Why Organic?’ with links to our special collections.
Our most popular product category is wine made with no added sulphites, we have started writing about them on our blog too, so far 6 hopefully very useful articles.
It is no surprise that we wanted to offer our customers even more value with our Natural Wines, so we’ve created a Natural October promotion, which turned out to be our most successful offer so far. We are thankful to our partners: Plenish (organic plant based milks and fresh juices subscription) and BonPom (organic cacao, chocolatey drinks and much more), who offered their amazing products to our members and extra vouchers to help everyone save on delicious organic produce. This promotion has been picked up by many passionate wine bloggers and influencers, many thanks to I Blame The Wine and many others for spreading the word.
We are on the mission to make organic wines simple and easy to buy and enjoy. To do exactly that, we've created an Introductory page to our organic wines.
We’ve collected the most popular questions and created a list of Frequently Asked Questions including ones regarding delivery charges and how expensive are our wines. Tricky questions those were!
We have all seen those £60 off vouchers sent by post or included in the magazines, haven't we? It was quite natural to address it and write about our stance towards super discounts and, as a result, wines below par sold by many discounters and aggressive wine clubs. Instead, we prefer to focus on small artisan producers of exciting wines made in limited quantities and as nature intended.
There are just so many different types of organic wines, so we felt it was quite important to use plain English and provide a very brief explanation of differences between organic, natural, vegan, biodynamic wines. It became our second most popular post on Facebook so far.
Some organic and natural wines are just so exciting that we have been also writing organic wine reviews specifically on them, these are our Organic Stars and Natural Stars. They are just to good and tasty, we want everyone to try them!
And just so you know, all our members enjoy their exclusive 10% discount code for everything in our store. We are delighted to assist in your shopping and provide personalised advice.
At the end of November we’ve been busy getting fully accredited by WSET, so we can offer wine courses and enhance wine knowledge for anyone who wants to work in the trade or for wine enthusiasts. Browse our Level 1 and Level 2 Awards in Wine professional wine courses here at our wine school page.
We were a bit worried that we are becoming far too serious, so we’ve created a Lifestyle Tit-Bits column and so far written about foods that contain a lot of nasty pesticide residue (isn’t it just fun?!), but also chocolate and wine matching, red wine and fish matching and much more!
Serious or not, definitely educational, but we also want to be helpful. We’ve started our festive fundraising campaign to donate some funds to SANE charity. We’re thankful to dozens of our customers who bought this fantastic wine!
Based on our member feedback, we started reviewing New Wine that we started to list, here are just a few write-ups about most recent new additions to our organic wine list.
Just before the end of 2016 we’ve also created a new exciting subscription product, perfect as organic wine discovery or a gift: 'Discovery' organic wine subscription.
To make things clearer on our site we've also created two separate pages for our pre-mixed cases: one for Organic, vegan friendly and allergen free wines and second for all Natural wine club cases with no added sulphites. Anyone who buys any of the case on these two pages will automatically be grated membership and will enjoy their own 10% off discount code and access to exclusive Members Only products and cases.
Finally, we've been busy analysing the numbers for 2016, celebrating our 1000's member order and crunching them further to produce two selections: our Best Value Organic Wines and also ultimate Customer Most Enjoyed Organic Wines. They have also resulted in our new wine club cases: Customer Best Value Red Case of 6 and Customer Most Enjoyed Case of 6 Red Organic Wines.
It has been a busy and eventful year for us starting Organic Wine Club at the end of June 2016. We are extremely grateful to everyone who supported us: our members and customers, partners, affiliates, media, local, National and International bloggers, local council and police, WSET, our suppliers and of course artisan winemakers without whom we wouldn’t have this amazing, delicious and healthier organic wines. Cheers to a Happy 2017!