Diageo Johnnie Walker

Diageo says it is yet to find an effective way to sell to consumers through its own online platforms, and has instead upped its focus on working with wholesale partners and retailers such as Ocado, Tesco and Amazon.

Speaking at a press briefing yesterday (6 September), the alcohol giant, which sells brands such as Johnnie Walker and Gordon’s Gin, said it is looking to hone in on its digital capabilities, in which ecommerce plays an important role.

Charles Ireland, Diageo‘s general manager for Great Britain, Ireland and France, told Marketing Week that it splits ecommerce up into four parts. The first part of its plan has been focused on developing a strategy and getting its “house in order”, with Ireland claiming the business is now “in decent shape”.

It second and third parts look at the strategy in the on-trade and off-trade and how it can sell through their ecommerce channels. And finally Diageo is looking into expanding its own online offering by selling directly to consumers through individual brand websites.

However, Ireland admits selling its products directly to consumers has proven tricky so far. He said Diageo’s luxury online retail destination Alexander & James, which launched five years ago but shut down in January this year, “wasn’t doing what it needed to do”.

READ MORE: Diageo looks to ‘close the circle’ between content and sales with Amazon tie-up

“In terms of direct to consumer [selling], I think there are consumer goods companies that are doing it quite successfully, but we…