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Mastering Wine Imports: The 3 KPIs Every Wine Importer Should know

Updated: Jun 24

Knowing is growing 

At Enocare, we specialize in making your wine import journey from Italy as smooth as a well-aged Chianti. As your logistics partner and wine consultant, we offer bonded storage in Northern Italy, fiscal representation, and comprehensive wine logistics. But beyond our services, we believe in empowering our clients with knowledge.

Today, we'll discuss the three Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that every wine distributor should know. These metrics will help you streamline your operations, enhance customer satisfaction, and ultimately, uncork more profits.

On-Time Delivery Rate (OTD)

In the wine business, timing isn't just about knowing when to open a bottle; it's about getting that bottle to your customer when they expect it. Your On-Time Delivery (OTD) measures the percentage of orders delivered within the promised timeframe. Why is this crucial?

Imagine a customer planning a summer soirée featuring a selection of Provence rosés. They place an order, trusting your promise of a two-week delivery. If that shipment arrives late, it's not just wine that's lost; it's your customer's trust and potentially their future business.

Here's how to calculate OTD:

Total On-Time  Deliveries / Total deliveries x 100%

A high OTD (aim for >95%) indicates reliability, a cornerstone of customer loyalty.

Perfect Order Rate

In an ideal world, every order would arrive on time, undamaged, and precisely as ordered. This is what the Perfect Order Rate (POR) measures. It's the holy grail of order fulfillment, encompassing on-time delivery, order accuracy, and product condition.

Here's how to calculate POR : 

Orders On Time × Orders without no  damage × Orders  without no Errors  

For example, if 95% of your orders are on-time, 98% are undamaged, and 99% are error-free, your POR would be: (0.95 \times 0.98 \times 0.99) \times 100 = 92.1%

A high POR (aim for >90%) means fewer returns, exchanges, and disgruntled customers. It's particularly vital in wine distribution. A mislabeled case of Barolo instead of Barbaresco, or a bottle of Chablis with a cracked cork due to mishandling, can sour a customer's experience.

Days of Inventory

Wine, unlike many products, can appreciate with age. However, tying up too much capital in inventory can corkscrew your cash flow. This is where Days of Inventory Outstanding (DIO) comes in. DIO measures how long, on average, your inventory sits before being sold.

Here's how to calculate DIO :  

Cost of Goods Sold / ((Average Inventory (/365 days)​)

A lower DIO is generally better, indicating efficient inventory turnover. However, in wine distribution, it's a balancing act. Some wines, like young Beaujolais Nouveau, have a short optimal drinking window. Others, like certain Bordeaux or Barolos, improve with age. Your DIO should reflect your product mix and market demand.

If your DIO is too high, you might have cash tied up in slow-moving stock or overstocked items. Too low, and you risk stockouts, disappointing customers craving that special Brunello di Montalcino.

This is where Enocare's expertise can help.  Our wine consultancy arm provides insights into market trends, helping you stock the right wines in the right quantities. Whether it's a case of trendy Etna Rosso or classic Margaux, we help you balance aging potential with market demand.

Moreover, our bonded storage facilities mean you can order in larger, cost-effective quantities without worrying about immediate sales. You pay duties and taxes only when the wine leaves our warehouse for the UK, not when it enters our facilities. This flexibility allows you to optimize your DIO while still offering a deep, varied cellar to your customers.  

In conclusion, as a UK-based wine retailer or importer, your passion lies in sharing the joys of Italian and French wines with your customers. By looking after these three KPIs - On-Time Delivery, Perfect Order, and Days of Inventory Outstanding - you turn that passion into a streamlined, profitable business.

At Enocare, we're more than a logistics provider; we're your partners. From our strategic Northern Italian location to our comprehensive services - bonded storage, fiscal representation, supplier pickups, consolidation, and EU-wide shipping - we're here to help you excel in these KPIs.

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