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Wine stores run the gamut from your mom and pop operation on the corner to huge regional powerhouses. They can be bricks and mortar, clicks and bricks, or virtual. Here or there, as close as the next block as far away as Indonesia, Argentina or Russia. They can offer wines at fixed retail pricing or via auction. The one thing they all share is that they are here on Snooth.

Just few pointers on some of the issues one runs into when shopping at retail for wines and spirits. Here’s an overview of the different types of stores and how they list inventory.

In Stock vs Out of Stock

The typical retailer owns their own stock and lists only what is in their inventory. They may be able to special order wines that they don’t carry. Other retailers list the entire wholesale offering that they have available to them. While this makes for an impressive selection be aware that it generally takes 2-4 days for such an order to be confirmed, let alone shipped. Websites that handle inventory in this manner generally have a disclaimer on each wine detail page explaining how long it will take to confirm the order. Due to every changing inventory situation it is not unusual for these items to be out of stock.

Other sites are actually auction sites that have wines available for a specific period of time. The highest bid that each lot garners during this period is the “hammer” price. Generally auctions also charge a “buyer’s Premium” which typically ranges from 12 to 20% so just be aware what you’re bidding for.

See what others are saying

When shopping on the web it’s good to check the Snooth feedback that stores have. While it is possible for good stores to have no fans and bad stores to have many, it’s always a good idea to check the feedback on Snooth’s compare and buy pages and use this valuable information to determine if it is worth saving that last dollar with a poorly rated retailer.

Don't forget about tax

One final consideration for your purchase from a Snooth partner store would have to be shipping and sales tax. Buying from an out of state retailer may save you the sales tax but you will have to pay shipping instead. It’s always a good idea to check shipping rates and laws before you finalize any transaction. Most web sites now have a shipping calculator built right into the site so it’s easy to shop and compare not only individual bottle costs, but the price of a complete order delivered to your door.

Join the conversation

Snooth puts you in touch with the retailers who carry the wines you want. It’s a great resource for finding and buying great wines but we are not a wine store. Always do your research and make an informed purchase, and don’t forget to rate your retailers. Only on Snooth!

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