Last month, without much notice, Google dropped all wine, beer and liquor from their product listing service. The was in connection with a change to their free Google Products service which is becoming a paid advertising service called Google Shopping.
Alcohol belongs to a class of products that Google identifies as “not-family-safe”, meaning they are intended for adults. The current Adwords policy allows for advertising some not-family-safe products including alcohol. Google has launched their new service from a conservative position. The new policy requires that products not only comply with Adwords policy, but they must also be family safe.
As social media platforms ramp up age verfification tools for alcohol brands, wineries begin to note "must be at least 21 years of age to follow this account", etc. what affect may this all be having on the early adopters utilizing the DTC online channel? Perhaps it affects such a small percentage of wineries there will be little out cry. But, it is certainly one sign of a new era where technology and marketing collide.