Looking to grow your alcohol sales? You’re in luck – with St. Patrick’s Day around the corner on Wednesday, March 17,  it’s bound to be a big day for drinks. In fact, the average person will consume 4.2 drinks on the holiday. 

This year, many people will still be gathering at home and in small groups. Make the most of the delivery trend by working with an alcohol delivery partner like DoorDash to get drinks to customers wherever they are. 

Keep reading to learn more about the unexpected history of the St. Patrick’s Day, and get ideas on alcohol delivery promotion for this festive holiday – both in store and for delivery.

The History of St. Patrick’s Day

What we generally think of St. Patricks’ Day in the U.S. is an excuse to wear green clothing, get together with friends, and drink Guinness, the holiday actually started as a much more solemn occasion in Ireland. Saint Patrick was a missionary who is credited for bringing Christianity to Ireland sometime during the 4th to 5th century, and St. Patrick’s Day originally started as a serious religious feast day to honor his work.

However, as Irish communities started settling in other countries around the world, St. Patrick’s Day turned into a joyous celebration of all things Irish in their new home countries. It’s a day for people everywhere to take pride in their Irish heritage, or simply join in the party if they aren’t Irish. In fact, St. Patrick’s Day is now an even bigger celebration outside of Ireland than it is in Ireland.

Celebrating at home

This March marks the one year anniversary of the COVID-19 shelter-in-place orders in the U.S., and St. Patrick’s Day celebrations are likely to be a bit more intimate. Rather than hosting the big parties and parades of previous years, people will focus on smaller gatherings. With indoor bars still closed across the country, customers will be looking for ways to bring the celebration into their homes and backyards.

This doesn’t mean St. Paddy’s needs to be less special this year. In fact, it’s a great opportunity for alcohol retailers and wholesalers to suggest creative ideas and alcohol delivery promotions for customers to celebrate in fun and new ways at home.

(Own a restaurant and want to sell alcohol? Sign up for DoorDash here, and learn how to add alcohol to your menu so that you can grow your alcohol sales too.)

The convenience of an alcohol delivery partner

As you build out your St. Patrick’s Day alcohol offerings, consider working with an alcohol delivery partner to get drinks to customers in time for the party. DoorDash delivers in an average of 35 minutes or less with minimal interruption to your current operations. Just pack the order after receiving it, and let Dashers deliver to the customer. Customers appreciate the convenience of not having to go back out to the store every time they run out of something, and businesses can relax knowing that Dashers are only handing off alcohol to customers who can verify they’re of legal drinking age.

Additionally, enable orders for pickup so that customers can easily confirm you have what they want in stock, place an order online, and swing by for a streamlined pickup process. You can do this using DoorDash Marketplace or DoorDash Storefront, a branded online ordering system that integrates seamlessly with your existing website and is commission-free.


Advertising alcohol delivery options

Since ad-hoc alcohol delivery is new for many retailers and wholesalers, customers might not be aware of your offerings. Make sure to put some time into marketing your alcohol delivery services

Tap into marketing solutions on DoorDash Marketplace like DashPass and access a high-value pool of loyal customers, tap into the power of social media and influencer partnerships to expand your reach, and share printed flyers to help get the word out in person. The opportunities to reach customers and drive sales are endless. Who knows – with the right marketing, you might just find a pot of gold at the end of the holiday.

restaurant social media marketing

Read on for some fun ideas on how to promote your alcohol delivery options this St. Patrick’s Day.

Honor tradition with St. Patrick’s Day staples

Traditions are traditions for a reason – they’re worth repeating. Set up an eye-catching display in your store, or a category specific to the holiday in your store’s listing on DoorDash Marketplace, with a selection of these St. Paddy’s favorites so that customers can quickly get what they need and get back to the festivities.

  • Guinness: The unofficial official drink of St. Patrick’s Day, Guinness is a dark Irish dry stout known for its rich, creamy head. It’s also the best-selling alcoholic drink in Ireland all year-round. 13 million pints of Guinness will be consumed on St. Patrick’s Day alone, which is 819% more than usual.

  • Green beer: With bars closed, encourage customers to make their own green beer at home by pairing a light-colored beer with a few drops of green food dye. Recommended beers include a Sam Adams Rebel IPA or a Shocktop Belgian White, but anything light in color will do. 

  • Irish whiskey: For those that prefer liquor to beer, consider pulling a selection of quality Irish whiskeys. Jameson Irish Whiskey is always a great choice, but feel free to pull out some unique, imported top-shelf options for those looking to expand their palette.

  • Gold flake drinks: Help your customers find their own pot of gold (or rather, cup of gold) with a spotlight on gold flake drinks, with options from vodka to wine.

Inspire customers with unexpected cocktails

After you’ve covered the basics, be bold with drink offerings that will inspire your customers’ creativity. Share cocktail recipes on your website or social media channels to get people thinking about new ways to spice up the holiday. Consider printing out cocktail recipes onto cards and dropping them into customers’ bags for in-store or delivery purchases, so they’re ready to explore new recipes.

  • Absinthe: Also known as “the Green Fairy,” this anise-flavored, high-proof spirit packs a punch in cocktails or on its own. Some swear that it can induce psychedelic properties, so a few lucky drinkers may think they’re seeing leprechauns after imbibing this one. 

  • Midori: Targeting a younger crowd, Midori is a neon green, melon-flavored liquor that’s great in tropical and fruity cocktails.

  • Mint Liquors: Highlight your green-hued mint-flavored liquors, like Tippy Cow Shamrock Mint, and suggest fun cocktails like a spiked grasshopper milkshake

  • Baby Guinness: You’ve heard of Guinness, but have you heard of a Baby Guinness? A layered shot drink that mixes coffee liqueur with Irish cream, this drink looks exactly like a tiny Guinness beer and is very easy to make.

Offer non-alcoholic options

Though many people celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a focus on drinking, there’s still a sizable group of people who don’t consume alcohol but still enjoy getting festive. As a beverage retailer or wholesaler, there’s a massive opportunity to connect with these customers and grow your sales. Get creative with the products you highlight – it could easily become someone’s new tradition.

  • Non-alcoholic beers: Non-alcoholic beers have come a long way in the last few years and there are now several respectable options on the market for those that like the taste of beer but don’t want the alcohol.

  • Non-alcoholic spirits and canned cocktails: The past few years have seen an explosion in the non-alcoholic spirits space, with innovative options that are infused with an assortment of botanicals, adaptogens, CBD, and nearly anything else you can think of. Recommend NA drink recipes, or curate a selection of canned NA cocktails that fit in with the St. Patrick’s Day theme.

  • Kids’ drinks: No one is more excited about a neon green drink than kids are. Suggest lemon-lime sodas, green syrups, and other brightly-colored beverages that let kids in on the fun too. 

Find your pot of gold

With so many options for promoting alcohol sales, you’re sure to capture the attention of your customers. (It’s much easier than catching a leprechaun this time of year.) Try out a few different promotions to follow that rainbow and learn what works best for your business and your customers so that you can continue to bring in the green even after St. Patrick’s Day.

Not sure if alcohol delivery is right for you? There are multiple other DoorDash tools you can use to grow your business, from pickup to marketing products. Check out the 2021 Product Guide for Merchants to learn more.

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Ali Cottong
Ali is a freelance content marketer with a wide range of experience crafting content and strategy for brands that include a world-renowned design agency, a men's artisan boot company, that app you use to request money on your phone, and more. Ali originally earned her nerd cred as a world-class Quidditch player and has competed in the Quidditch World Cup twice. She currently lives in Oakland where she's traded her broomstick in for a bike.