Hard Seltzer Consumer Profile


To understand the demographics and psychographics of the typical US consumer of alcoholic seltzer beverages, including how hard seltzers are fitting into their routines and the type of other beverages they tend to consume. This information will help inform for a pitch to an alcoholic seltzer brand.

Early Findings

  • Hard seltzers typically represent convenience and health to US consumers. Priced lower than craft beers, they also appeal to those looking to save money.
  • Typical consumers of alcoholic seltzers are younger, but the drinks have a wide range of appeal to "health-conscious" consumers across all age ranges. Another expert agrees that there is a false perception that it's only young females consuming these 'healthier' beverages, when actually the category appeals across the board. However, there is evidence that well-educated females with disposable income are the main demographic driving category growth.
  • Nielsen found that the category grew 185% in dollar sales in the past year.
  • Research from Nielsen also found that hard seltzers are taking money mostly from the sparkling wine category, followed by spirits, then beer/cider/malt.
  • Seltzer sells more rapidly during summer months, implying its consumers are looking for refreshment. The drinks are also seen as more portable than other types of alcoholic beverages, which is suited to summer's focus on outdoor activities.
  • However, brands are also enjoying robust sales outside of summer, which can be used to understand consumer motivations outside of just refreshment and convenience.
  • The rise in hard seltzer is credited to the meteoric success of non-alcoholic sparkling water like La Croix. This implies that its appeals to a similar demographic/consumer profile.
  • Some consumers use hard seltzers to supplement their other alcoholic drinks, such as when they feel 'full' of beer, they will switch to hard seltzer.
  • Hard seltzer brands have deliberately advertised to both men and women.

Research proposal:

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