Visitors to Allrecipes’ redesigned mobile and desktop sites, which launched Tuesday, will find what looks like a personalized Pinterest page, complete with social elements including like button variants and the ability to follow other cooks and food brands.
Founded in 1997 as a place for home cooks to find and share recipes, Allrecipes needed to change partially because its existing design wasn’t very usable to the two-thirds of visitors coming from mobile devices. Besides a more visual-heavy site, mobile visitors will notice a large search bar and personalization elements designed to improve recipe discovery.
The redesign also benefits advertisers as it enables “omniscreen” ads – such that a single buy places ads on both mobile and desktop sites. Consequently, Allrecipes can sell its mobile audience at a higher rate. And the 300x250 ads, similar in size to the recipe tiles, have a more native feel.
The social redesign not only improves display ad monetization, but also allows brands to create followings and pages filled with branded recipes, integrating themselves into the social fabric of Allrecipes.
Advertisers can also create branded pages filled with recipes for fans to follow. For instance Swanson’s, a redesign launch partner, has its own
recipe hub, and users can follow Swanson’s the same way they follow other cooks.
Allrecipes will also prioritize Swanson’s recipe placements and provide details about the followers it attracts and the recipes they view, said Esmee Williams, VP of brand marketing.
“We can learn about what distinguishes your food community from the food community at large, to help inform product road maps and be smarter about who to target,” she said.
But brands have long been part of the Allrecipes experience, noted company President Stan Pavlovsky.
“When they leverage one of the native products, it’s persistent on the site and the structure of the site,” he said. “With banner blindness and ad blocking, we need to have experiences that are viewable and allow advertisers to connect meaningfully with consumers.”
Allrecipes’ redesign addresses the mobile web experience, but not the mobile app experience. Despite having 23 million app downloads, “monetizing apps is even harder than monetizing mobile,” Pavlovsky said, because it yields lower CPMs and requires different infrastructure.
He hopes, however, the omniscreen ads will help extend Allrecipes’ business model into the app environment. And once app monetization improves, Allrecipes will start investing in capabilities like deep linking, which would increase traffic to its app.