Does Your Recipe Content Spark Joy?
Updated: Jun 12, 2020
If you've spent any time on social media in 2019, it's likely that you've come across chatter about de-cluttering guru Marie Kondo's Netflix show. Her KonMari method of tidying encourages people to dump anything that doesn't spark joy. (The method does allow you to keep functional items, so don't dump your vacuum cleaner just yet.) It's fair to say that the Netflix series has been a success, with charity shops reporting massive increases in donations. Here in Recipe Guru we've jumped on board the bandwagon, neatly folding the clothes that bring us joy, thanking the ones that don't before throwing them out, and generally feeling smug. We've even applied the method to our digital lives, de-cluttering our desktops and organising our Dropbox accounts.
This method can also be applied to recipe content. Recipes have become an important source of engagement for grocery retailers, food brands and in the smart kitchen. If you work as part of a content team that sources new recipe content, you'll have been busy doing just that of late to keep up with demand from customers, but you might not have considered deleting recipe content. Yes, really. A company called Recipe Guru is suggesting that you delete recipes from your website. There's a method to our madness though. Here's why you should make like Marie Kondo and de-clutter your recipe website.
1. Your recipes don't spark joy
Your data will tell you which recipes are resonating with your audience and which recipes are not. We're not suggesting that you delete every recipe that receives only a few hits a month. Those recipes are clearly resonating with someone. But it might be time to trim the recipes that haven't received any love in a number of months. They're clearly not what your audience is looking for in a recipe. For some recipes, the reason will be clear. Maybe they're outdated. Maybe they simply don't reflect what your customers crave. Those are the recipes to remove. For other recipes, it might not be so clear-cut. Have you promoted these recipes lately? If the answer is yes and they still haven't received any traffic, then it's time to say goodbye. If not, maybe it's time your marketing team gives them one last chance before making a decision.
2. Unloved recipes are dragging your site down
Poor-performing pages can harm your SEO ranking, and if you have recipes that aren't attracting any traffic, it's time to trim the bloat. If no one is visiting a recipe page, and no one is linking to it, then it adds no value. Will anyone notice that it's gone? No, apart from the search engines that crawl your site, indexing your low-quality pages and using them as a reason to rank you lower than you'd ideally like to be. Give Google something to get excited about by removing those low-quality pages and creating a permanent redirect to a complementary page to avoid a '404 Not Found' error.
3. You're making things difficult for your customers, and helping your competitors
An increased interest in home cooking means that consumers crave fresh recipe inspiration to avoid falling back on the old reliables week-in-week-out. If your website is cluttered with recipes your customers don't want, it makes it difficult to find the recipes they do want. This isn't exactly conducive to fostering loyalty. There's no shortage of delicious recipes available elsewhere, and by making it difficult for customers to find recipes that get their pulses racing, you're delivering them to your competitors on a plate.
By de-cluttering your recipe pages à la Marie Kondo, not only are you sparking joy for your website visitors by providing a better, more delicious browsing experience, but you're also making room for fresh, up-to-date content that reflects what your audience truly wants from you. The KonMari method isn't about never adding new things to your life after all - it just means that you're a little more mindful of what you do add. Unlike Marie Kondo though, we don't recommend dumping those joyless recipes completely. File them away on your computer (don't forget to fold them neatly), ready to upload again if Cucumber and Grape Mould or Tomato Aspic come back into fashion.
If your recipe content is in need of an update, we'd love to talk to you about how our cost-effective, chef-authored recipes can help you spark joy amongst your customers. Contact our content team at firstname.lastname@example.org and let's cook up something delicious together.