Gift orders have become an increasingly important sales driver on Drizly — not only during the holiday season, but throughout the year. Over the past 12 months, gifting accounted for 11 percent of the platform’s total sales. 

“The biggest trend we are seeing is a rise in gift share overall,” says Liz Paquette, Drizly’s head of consumer insights. “This suggests increased consumer awareness of the ability to send alcohol gifts online across the country.”

December is consistently the hottest month for gift orders; in 2021, sales share reached 20 percent that month — nearly double the year-round average. On both December 20 and 21, as the Christmas and New Year’s Eve holidays drew nearer, sales share peaked at 35 percent. 

The gift-giving frenzy also brought a spike in the average per-item unit price. Over the last 12 months, gift orders price per item on Drizly averaged $46.80 — up from $39.20 the previous year and more than double the average of $18.80 for standard orders. 

To keep the momentum going, Paquette says, retailers will need to make sure they have enough staff on hand to handle the increased volume. “Be ready for gift orders, particularly on high-volume days,” she says. “Prepare staff early on how to manage gift orders, from including a gift note and wrapping to assuring gifts are delivered during the scheduled window.”

BevAlc Insights analyzed Drizly gift order data from the past 12 months to provide insights into the buying behaviors and demographics of gift buyers, including the top-selling product categories.

Millennials Are the Primary Gift Buyers

Millennial consumers, ranging in age from 26 to 41, over-index on gift orders relative to standard order share on Drizly. This age group accounted for 58 percent share of gift orders in the past year compared to 51 percent of standard order share. 

“Though Drizly orders overall skew towards the millennial generation, this is even more so the case for gift orders, likely a result of this age group having greater awareness that ordering alcohol delivery for gifts is an option,” explains Paquette. “As more generations become more aware of this gifting option, we may see a share shift.”

Retailers located in the markets of New York City, Los Angeles, New Jersey, Boston, and Chicago should prepare for a gift-order rush, as these markets over-index on gift orders. 

Champagne and Bourbon Are Top Gifts

When planning holiday inventory, Paquette recommends that retailers focus on the two most popular categories for gifting on Drizly: wine and liquor. At 50 percent of gift order share, wine was the most common gift during the past 12 months, followed by liquor at 46 percent share. Among wine and spirits subcategories, Champagne and bourbon were the biggest sellers. 

Drizly’s Most-Gifted Wine Subcategories

  1. Champagne
  2. Red Wine
  3. White Wine
  4. Sparkling Rosé 
  5. Still Rosé 

Drizly’s Most-Gifted Liquor Subcategories

  1. Bourbon
  2. Scotch Whisky
  3. Reposado Tequila 
  4. Añejo Tequila
  5. Silver/Blanco Tequila 

Gifts Schedule in Advance — But Not Too Far

Over the last 12 months, Friday was the top day for gift orders on Drizly, with the majority occurring from Wednesday through Friday. This was a shift from standard orders, which most often took place on weekends. 

Friday was the most popular day for gift orders in the month of December, followed by Thursday and Wednesday. Saturday and Sunday were the least popular gifting days, together making up just 16 percent of gift order share. 

Another big difference between gift orders and standard orders on Drizly is delivery type. While standard orders on Drizly are typically on-demand, calling for delivery in the next 60 minutes, the majority of gift orders — 83 percent over the past 12 months — are scheduled in advance.

This gives retailers some extra time to plan and pack gift orders, but they shouldn’t expect more than a few additional hours. Deliveries for the majority of scheduled Drizly orders fall on the same day that orders are placed. 

In 2021, the majority of December gift orders came in during the week of Christmas. On December 21, 22, and 23, more than 30 percent share of Drizly orders were gifts. 

Drizly’s Top Days for Gift Order Share in December 2021

December was the top month for gift orders over the past 12 months, with December 20 and 21 as the busiest days. The top days for share of total Drizly sales in December 2021 were:  

  • December 21 (35 percent)
  • December 20 (35 percent)
  • December 22 (34 percent)
  • December 23 (29 percent)
  • December 16 (28 percent)