Retailers should tweak their alcohol range ahead of the New Year with fractionals and low- and no-alcohol beers to make sure sales remain strong.

That was the advice from Clare Kendall, impulse & wholesale senior customer category manager at Diageo, as the company announced it was extending its ‘Inspire, display, sell’ retailer initiative to help retailers make more money at Christmas.

“In the New Year, convenience stores make up 40% of total alcohol sales, up from an average of 35%. Sixty-nine per cent of alcohol sales come from shoppers spending £10 or less, so fractionals have a key role,” she said.

Diageo is advising retailers to stock 20cl and 35cl bottles next to larger formats of their bestselling brands, as well as introduce a small no-alcohol section in their chillers.

“In convenience, only 0.2% of beer is low alcohol, but in grocery it is 1.3%,” she said.

Findings from Diageo’s research also indicate that convenience retailers are missing out on the boom in gin sales that multiples have experienced this year.

“Gin only accounts for 6% of spirits sold in impulse, but in grocery it is 15%. Last year, 9.3 million people tried a new drink during the festive period, meaning that it is a key time to grow premium spirits sales,” Kendall added.