This is my occasional coverage of shopping and ecommerce search engines. I read about this site in a newspaper article and it sounded so interesting I had to write it up. I’m talking about Wine-Searcher, which contains information on over 15,000,000 prices from just under 15,000 wine stores. It’s available at http://www.wine-searcher.com/.
You can search by wine name, by vintage (there’s also “NV” — a No Vintage option), merchant state (many countries are represented), and whether or not you want to include auctions. I did a search for chocolate, doing an all vintage search. I got ten vintages returned, and chose No Vintage and got almost 3000 results…
… many of which were not wines! My results included chocolate bars, chocolate shot glasses, and what looked like “airplane bottles” of chocolate liqueurs. On the other hand, there were results for Chocolate Stout and Sam Adams Chocolate Bock. The search results page includes the name of the merchant (with a link to the site), location and information about the merchant (case discounts, delivery options, minimum orders, etc.) and a series of icons which indicate things like secure online ordering, global delivery, or whether the merchant is a wine broker (buying and selling wine.) There’s also a direct link to the item in the merchant’s store and a price. A button at the top of the search result provides a link to search for “tasting notes” for more specific wine names and brands.
I mentioned that there were almost 3000 results for this search, but I could only look at 50. That’s because I was looking at the free version of this search engine and not the pro version. The pro version costs $29.95 a year and allows you unlimited search results, the ability to specify a maximum/minimum price, the ability to search by bottle size, and alerts, among a few other things.
I don’t think I’ll be signing up for the pro version of this search engine (if they ever make one for root beer I’m right there) but I found the random keyword searches brought up very interesting stuff and the wine names were all over the map. Fun to explore.