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A Sobering 12 Months

Fifteen years ago, the notion that we’d buy all our books online was unthinkable. Less believable still was the concept of those books being delivered wirelessly, and read on a device rather than a printed page. Even a year ago, plenty of people suggested to us that there was no reason to enter the business of wine e-commerce.

The web’s still too small a portion of total U.S. wine sales, some said. Sure, lots of people are buying wine online right now, but can you really provide a different value or perspective? others asked.

For us, the past year pretty much says it all.

And whether by design or by accident (depending on which of us you ask), we know we’ve addressed both those questions successfully. Yes, online sales remain a small portion of overall American wine purchases, but they’re growing all the time – and they’ll continue to, much the same way that a few thousand books were sold online in the mid-‘90s, and millions are today.

But Lot18 didn’t see a wildly successful first year because we simply entered a growing market; we entered that market with high standards and rigid principles from the get-go, believing early on that we could make the experience better for wine producers and consumers alike. From our very first offer, we’ve always tried to place the emphasis on the products we feature; we prefer to act as stewards for the wine and gourmet-food industries rather than promote ourselves. As a result, no product goes on Lot18 that we, ourselves, wouldn’t buy with our own money. And you can expect the same of all our new types of offers soon to launch, some only a few days away (watch this space).

We also place an unusually high importance on good customer service to ensure that anyone who’s bought a product through Lot18 has a pleasant, enjoyable experience. If not, we make amends – quickly.

But the most important piece of the puzzle has been you, our loyal members. If we didn’t consistently offer access to great-tasting, hard-to-find foods and wines, you wouldn’t keep coming back for more. The fact that you do – along with providing enthusiastic, constructive feedback – tells us that we’re on the right track. And the best is most definitely yet to come.

We can’t thank you enough for your loyal membership and support over the past year, and we’re truly excited at the prospect of finding for you even more rare, delicious and delectable treats in the year – and years – ahead.