The Drink shop ascends table of top performing drinks websites in December

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The Drink Shop moved strongly up the table of best performing drinks websites this month as most retailers hold their places in the run up to the Christmas period, according to tests conducted on the online stores of the top 25 UK drinks sellers in December by testing specialist Sitemorse.

The online-only merchant The Drink Shop climbed eight places this month reversing fully the slide it suffered in November as it achieved a score of 3.61 out of 10 compared with 2.89 last month. The fact it moved up so many places for only a marginal increase in its performance score highlights the level of competition in the middle of the table.

Its steep climb is something of an exception this month as most retailers retain the same positions as last month in a sign that they are undertaking very few changes to their websites ahead of the crucial festive trading period. Affecting modifications to their sites is deemed to be too risky at this stage of the year.

Marks & Spencer is one of the rare movers as it fell one place to 13th spot despite being awarded 73 medals for its own label wine in the recent International Wine Challenge. This tally was twice the number of its nearest supermarket rival Tesco, which picked up 32.

At the top of the table for November the first four places remain the same with Bargain Booze holding on to its leaders spot with a score of 7.56. It is followed by Budgens, Fortnum & Mason, and The Whisky Shop, with fifth place now occupied by Spar (UK) that pushed out Lid and Aldi.

To produce the rankings Sitemorse runs automated software that page-by-page reads the first 125 pages of each website and analyses on the basis of six key criteria – function, code quality, user experience, accessibility, performance and SEO capability.

The only other major mover this month is Majestic Wine that fell seven places to 20th spot, which follows it decline of three places in November. It has now given up most of the rise up the table it achieved during the middle of the year.

Below Majestic, the bottom five places are all held by the same merchants, with Naked Wines still propping up the table in last spot with a score of only 1.62 – the same as it recorded in October.

Londis was yet again excluded from the Sitemorse testing this month because of its reliance on JavaScript.

Top UK Drinks Retail Websites – December 2014

Company Name                      +/-       Score out of 10

  • Bargain Booze            same               7.56
  • Budgens                       same               5.72
  • Fortnum & Mason    same                5.72
  • The Whisky Shop     same                5.66
  • Spar (UK)                   +3                      5.57
  • Lidl                               same                 5.13
  • Aldi                               -2                       5.04
  • EH Booth & Co           -1                       4.92
  • The Wine Society       same                4.56
  •  same                4.32
  • Iceland                          same                3.86
  • The Drink Shop         +8                      3.61
  • Marks & Spencer        -1                       3.40
  • Morrisons                   same                  3.38
  • Tesco                            same                  3.20
  • Selfridges                    same                  3.20
  • Sainsbury’s                same                   3.14
  •                  same                  3.14
  • Waitrose Cellar        same                   3.14
  • Majestic Wine          -7                         3.04
  • Virgin Wines            same                   2.94
  • Asda                            same                   2.40
  • Laithwaites               same                   2.40
  • Sun Times Wine      same                   1.89
  • Naked Wines           same                    1.62

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