We’re quickly moving towards the end of 2023, and sales are ramping up as the holidays take hold. In November, Thanksgiving spurred consumers to stock up ahead of the holiday, as it often does, and Drizly users were even taking advantage of other weekday holidays and long weekends to shop as well. Learn more about these and other insights from Drizly’s November 2023 sales.

November Category Growth: Rum & Cola RTDs, Dessert and Fortified Wines, and American Strong Ales

A fresh subcategory of ready-to-drink cocktails experienced the highest year-over-year sales growth in the spirits category last month: the Rum & Cola RTD cocktail, a packaged version of the popular mixed drink. Within the beer category, consumers reached for a richer style in November: the American strong ale, which includes beers above 7% ABV that have a more malt-forward style than double IPAs.

Among wine subcategories, dessert and fortified wine led the pack. Sweet wines typically spike around the holidays, so this could be an early indicator of purchasing trends through end of year.

Thanksgiving 2023 Insights

The Thanksgiving holiday drove sales on the Drizly platform, notably on Wednesday, November 22 – the day before Thanksgiving – when sales were 130 percent higher than the average of the other Wednesdays in the month. It was the top sales date of the month. This is often the case on Drizly, as most retailers are closed on Thanksgiving itself.

On the day before Thanksgiving, wine became the bestselling category with 44 percent share of sales – up five percentage points from the rest of the month. Within the category, red wine led share at 42 percent and Champagne and sparkling wine held 23 percent share; each was up two percentage points from the month overall.

Market Insights: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Another market new to alcohol delivery – New Mexico legalized the practice in July 2021 – Albuquerque was the fastest-growing market year-over-year on Drizly last month. Unlike nationwide trends, wine led sales in Albuquerque in November, with 42 percent share of sales (compared to 39 percent overall).

Broken down by subcategory, vodka leads in the market, with 21 percent of share last month. That is followed by four wine subcategories – red wine (12 percent), Champagne and sparkling wine (10 percent), white wine (10 percent), and pink wine (10 percent). Lager sits in spot No. 6 with nine percent, followed by whiskey (eight percent), ready-to-drink (five percent), tequila (four percent), and soda, water, and soft beverages (four percent).

Drizly’s Top-Selling SKUs in Albuquerque, November 2023

  1. Tito’s
  2. La Marca
  3. Joel Gott
  4. Svedka
  5. Black Box
  6. Stem Ciders
  7. Coors
  8. Bieler Pere Et Fils
  9. Matua
  10. Azunia

Fastest-Growing Brands in November 2023

Brand growth in the wine category pointed to the draw of calorie-conscious options; the fastest-growing brand was SYLTBAR, which specializes in sparkling wines that boast just 49 calories for the standard offering and 63 calories for the rosé. Though there’s often a move towards more health-conscious options in January, as more consumers partake in Dry or Damp January, we have seen this trend take hold throughout 2023.

A 2022 favorite led year-over-year brand growth in the beer category last month: The Alchemist, a Vermont craft brewery known for its unfiltered IPAs – particularly the cult favorite Heady Topper. Within the liquor category, premium tequila brand Flecha Azul led growth. It crafts a wide range of blanco, reposado, cristalino, añejo, and extra añejo tequilas.

Consumers Are Stocking Up for Long Weekends

The second-highest sales date of November came on Friday, November 10, which many consumers had off from work to observe Veterans Day. Sales on Drizly were 18 percent higher than the average of the other Fridays in November, which follows a trend usually seen in the summer months: When many companies offer a weekday off of work, those days tend to result in above-average sales. With Martin Luther King Day and President’s Day, for instance, coming up in January and February, retailers should be prepared.