Yahoo Makes Splash into Food Sector
Today Yahoo released a new lifestyle vertical targeting the food area that could send some ripples in the community. The website has the potential to pull significant content into it from the Yahoo network making it a food portal that could compete. The question will be if Yahoo invests the time and energy to promote it to foodies and fixes some issues. The site is fast, responsive and very image based using masonry jscript and ajax technologies (it appears). It is not quite a Pinterest website as the look and feel has a very Flickr personality to it.
The content brings the best of internet food together but it also brings some unexpected surprises. On the main page there was a category called “weird” with a cartoon that had something to do with a sake bar. One the animated gif was distracting and second it did just not fit. Someone at Yahoo on the content side needs to pay a little more attention to the front section of the webpage; especially on launch day.
The top menu is missing some important user elements. First, the menu simply disappears as you scroll down and second I am not sure how they are deciding on what to have on the top menu bar. There is no recipe option and no way to pick the categories you want to display. Today the only options were Healthy Stuff, Comfort Food and Dessert with a few others. It is like they decided randomly that those were the categories we were interested in today. What is if I wanted to search on Pastas? Your only option is to search in the search bar and that brings you back to the general Yahoo search engine results page that is dull and boring. One would expect another flashy results page or at least something similar to Google’s recipe view leveraging recipe microformats.
Overall I think the site has potential but there is a lot more work to be done. We will look at it in more depth but this has the potential to be a failure if they don’t get the content side, user interface and user workflow aspects working better. It looks like it was rushed out for CES and with minimal input from foodies.
If Yahoo wants some input they can feel free to us as we know they can make this something outstanding with some more input. They have a lot of technologies in their inventory that could make this site 10x better.
Tell use what you think about the Yahoo Food portal.