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Brought to you by Retail Insider and Sitemorse

Convenience store business Budgens has reclaimed the number one spot in the table of the Top UK drinks websites in March, according to analysis undertaken exclusively for Retail Insider by online specialist Sitemorse.

It moves up one place to head the table after Spar (UK) has lost some momentum and slips four places. Such moves come in a vibrant month as most of the entries in the table changed position. At the top end Budgens is now followed by Bargain Booze, up two places, Aldi, also up two, The Whisky Shop, down one place, and Spar (UK) completes the top five places.

Aldi has now created some clear blue sky between it and rival Lidl, which slips three places into 11th spot with a score of 3.59 out of 10 compared with the 5.60 achieved by 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.

Just outside the top five is Londis that has not featured in the table for some time because of the sites’ reliance on JavaScript. But it makes a welcome return this month in a creditable sixth place with a score of 4.64. The only site excluded this month was Sainsbury’s.

Among the major movers in March are Fortnum & Mason that moves up four places to seventh spot, Marks & Spencer climbs six into eighth spot, and The Wine Society moves up five places to 13th spot.

The fallers this month included some of the UK’s major supermarkets, with Morrisons down four places to 14th spot, Tesco down six to 19th, Asda down three to 25th, and Waitrose down three to bottom place.

The upmarket grocer replaces The Sunday Times Wine Club that climbs two places along with sister site Laithwaites that also moves up two to 18th spot. This places it above this month’s biggest faller Oddbins that slipped 12 places into 21st spot with a score of 2.32 compared with 3.40 in February.

Such moves come amid sales across the whole of the online market increasing in February by an impressive 18% year-on-year, which is the biggest jump since June 2015, according to the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index.

Top UK Drinks Retail Websites – March 2016

 Company Name                                  +/-       Score out of 10

  • Budgens                                         +1                   5.72
  • Bargain Booze                             +2                  5.68
  • Aldi                                                  +2                   5.60
  • The Whisky Shop                      -1                     5,38
  • Spar (UK)                                     -4                     4.83
  • Londis                                            new                4.64
  • Fortnum & Mason                    +4                   3.84
  • Marks & Spencer                       +6                   3.76
  • Majestic Wine                             -3                    3.66
  • The Drink Shop                          -3                    3.61
  • Lidl                                                   -3                    3.59
  • EH Booth & Co                            same             3.48
  • The Wine Society                       +5                  3.30
  • Morrisons                                      -4                   3.20
  • Slurp.co.uk                                    same            3.14
  • Selfridges                                        same            2.80
  • BEERmerchants.com              same             2.58
  • Laithwaites                                   +2                   2.40
  • Tesco                                                -6                   2.34
  • Virgin Wines                                +1                   2.32
  • Oddbins                                          -12                 2.32
  • British Airways Wine Club     +2                  2.24
  • Sun Times Wine Club               +2                 2.15
  • Naked Wines                                 -5                  2.14
  • Asda                                                  -3                   2.14
  • Waitrose Cellar                            -3                   2.14

Sitemorse has been advising its clients about how to improve their web presence for more than a dozen years and its technical team have fine-tuned the Sitemorse software engine so that it is capable of doing far more than just helping find problems. The company offers true digital insight to many large and small organisations in public and private sectors, as well as publishing regular unique INDEX benchmarks