Online recipes are more popular than ever. YouTube searches for “Best Recipe” increased 48% in 2015, and a third of U.S. internet users consider recipes one of the most important reasons to visit a food brand’s site. This suggests that adding cooking tips can help brands encourage online loyalty. But does that mean every food brand should add recipes to their online presence?
L2’s recipe content report suggests that recipes are only worth it if they make clear why consumers should purchase the brand’s products, rather than the same items made by a competitor. For example, McCormick’s FlavorPrint tool helps consumers determine which McCormick spice provides the best flavor for a particular dish, thus encouraging home cooks to head to the supermarket for the brand’s paprika or oregano. In contrast, bread company Nature’s Own offers generic recipes such as Tex-Mex burgers and sandwiches, which are unlikely to motivate hungry viewers to buy Nature’s Own bread rather than a competitor.
Food brands with more popular sites also see more ROI from recipe content. The study finds that McCormick’s site attracts 1.5 million monthly visitors, 68 times more than the Nature’s Own site – translating into substantially more views and thus conversions for FlavorPrint. Instead of investing in their own recipes, brands with low site traffic could consider reallocating their budget to third-party recipe sites like Allrecipes and Yummly, which might help them gain more visibility.