On average, site traffic declined by 29% for analyzed food brands year over year, while retailers in Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index: Grocery saw a 27% uptick in site traffic.

Grocery retailers have invested in site content and basket-building initiatives like integrating nutrition information and cross-selling on product pages, with year-over-year adoption rates for these features increasing by 19% and 20%, respectively. As e-tailers continue to improve site experiences and consumers increasingly shift to retailer sites for research, the role of the brand site comes under review. Index leaders in the site dimension are predominantly enterprise brands from Kraft Heinz, Nestlé and Unilever. Kraft’s strong performance is a testament to its templatized, consolidated site, myfoodandfamily.com, which offers a consistent experience across all portfolio brands and hosts a large breadth of content that dwarfs other recipe-focused sites. For example, searching for “slow cooker” recipes on Land O’ Lakes, a monobrand and top scorer on recipe site features, returns just 100 results, whereas Kraft hosts nearly 600 related recipes.

As food brands reckon with declining site traffic, enterprises increasingly shift toward consolidation. While Kraft Heinz hosts its brand sites entirely on a single domain, others focus on specific site components. For example, Conagra and The Kellogg Co. selectively consolidate recipe content and e-commerce features, respectively. Both models, when seamlessly integrated, improve the consumer journey by clearly distinguishing the role of each domain as it relates to product, content and commerce.

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