What Goes With Wine? Facets, Of Course!

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal features an article about “What’s Wrong With Wine on the Web“. While it mostly complains about problems with online wine shops, it does feature a few who do it right, and I’m proud that two of the four featured sites use faceted search and are powered by Endeca. Hopefully this helps make up for all the times that my colleagues (especially us vintage Endecans) have had to give the “wine demo“.

Here are screenshots of the two featured sites (yes, I’m into Spanish and South American reds):

Good Values on South American Reds at

K&L Wines:

Spanish Reds on a Budget at K&L Wine Merchants

By Daniel Tunkelang

High-Class Consultant.

6 replies on “What Goes With Wine? Facets, Of Course!”

I’m with you. Tempranillo is a completely underrated grape, and Spanish wines are generally under appreciated, IMHO.


I’ve talked to the Snooth guys but never seen them demo their site. I’m a bit partial to faceted search, and that doesn’t seem to be their approach. But I’d be curious to hear how they pitched it at the Meetup.


Hi Daniel,
Is there any data re customer usage of facets? ie. On average, what percentage of search sessions where a user narrows the results via a facet?


Pete, unfortunately we don’t get that data ourselves, since we don’t generally host our customers’ sites. But I can say that the usage of facets depends a lot on both the information needs of site users (specifically, the relative amounts of known-item vs. exploratory searches) and the site design (e.g., how prominent are the facets). Given our diversity of customers, the numbers are surely all over the map.


Faceted browse is very useful when you’re dealing with large numbers of products. It’s also very useful for people who have a slight idea of what they’re looking for (or not looking for). For example, they can untick a country of grape if they tend not to like those types of wines.

Unfortunately not every website is using this (although the above examples are very good) and I think this is where some websites will stand out.

Supermarkets with online shopping (including wine delivery) are particularly bad and some of them make it nearly impossibly to buy wine online, at least here in the UK.


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