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6 Questions to Understand Ready-to-Drinks

Updated: Oct 27, 2021

The Ready-to-Drink (RTD) category has seen immense growth in the past year. Consumers are interested in the ease, convenience, and variety offered by RTD's, which isn't surprising seeing as the category has a wide variety of offerings. From pre-mixed cocktails to spiked seltzers there is a product for every pallet. As we slowly trudge our way back to normality, eRNDC wants to make sure you have all the insights and inventory you may need to keep your consumers happy and quenched this summer!

#1 What Are RTDs? Ready-to-drink cocktails are exactly what it sounds like—cocktails that come prepared in a can or bottle, ready for consumption. Commonly drank chilled or over ice, all you need to do is pop the top and enjoy.

#2 Who’s Your Consumer? When looking at RTDs, it is important to understand the type of people who drink them. While enjoyed mostly by consumers age 22-44, RTDs are steadily gaining popularity amongst older drinkers as well. Though these delightful drinks are favored by many groups, some groups prefer them more than other groups. Women, for example, are more likely to consume RTDs than men. Nearly 1 in 5 female consumers drink premixed wine-based RTDs.

While the standard consumer is a caucasian female, RTDs are becoming more popular with Hispanic consumers. 57% of Hispanic consumers will drink RTDs while only 45% of non-Hispanic consumers opt for the convenient beverage.

Take these insights into consideration when stocking up.

#3 Why Drink RTDs? The reasons to enjoy an RTD are as abundant as its flavors. We drink socially, we cheers to childhood friends, we sip to celebrate, but with RTDs, we also drink them to boost our mood. If there were ever a drink that took first place for boosting one’s mood, RTDs would take the blue ribbon. Overall, one of the most common motivations to partake in these potent portables is to finesse your frame of mind. RTDs also have the added benefit of being a feel-good option. 43% of people consume them to reduce stress, while 35% consume them to improve their mood. So why do people drink RTDs other than that they’re delicious? Short answer: because why not? Long answer: because it’s a feel-good drink. And after the year we’ve had, a drink like this is much needed.

#4 Where’s The Flavor? When it comes to RTDs, there’s a flavor to satisfy just about anyone’s palate. The array of flavors in this emerging category are ever expanding and are key factors when attracting consumers. The best way to attract new customers is by utilizing POS and communicating the better-for-you aspects of RTDs beyond nutritional values, such as health-focused flavors and beneficial ingredients. Research shows that there is virtually no difference in consumer perception of products carrying low or no-sugar claims versus those that don’t. Most RTD drinkers say their consumption increase is due to the wide variety of flavors. One thing you can always count on in the adult beverage industry is the innovation of flavors. Brands should constantly be adjusting to the current food and beverage trends. In retail and on-premise, new and innovative flavors should be highlighted to attract consumers.

#5 When Do Consumers Drink RTDs? There’s a drink for just about any occasion; beer when you grill, fine dine with wine, and champagne for toasting. Well, surprise, surprise, RTDs are no different. Consumers are most likely to enjoy an RTD while relaxing at home with friends and family. The second most common occasion is small gatherings or intimate get-togethers. We might see more of these gatherings as everything continues to open back up and more and more people start to go out. RTDs have strong ties to social occasions and large on-premise events. There are opportunities to expand consumption by marketing RTDs as casual, at-home treats or as something to share with friends at a dinner party. #6 Where can I find RTDs for my store, restaurant or bar?

RNDC Customers can find shop RTDs with ease on Sign in and click the "Ready-to-Drink & Hard Seltzers" category to see a list of offerings in your market. You can sign in today to place an order or claim your account and browse RNDC's portfolio of products at your convenience.

RNDC takes pride in being your adult beverage distributor and will continue to provide you with key insights to help you grow. We hope that you have a better understanding of the RTD category and a clear grasp on how to utilize them in your area. RTD responsibly, cheers!


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