The Secret behind Serious Eats’ Success

It was a gloomy weekend here in New York City and what a perfect time to cuddle under your blanket while sipping some hot chocolate. It was good to be home on a Sunday afternoon while enjoying the gloomy view of Manhattan from my window. But as a true foodie, I have to use my spare time wisely to uncover more stories within the world of food. At last, I have found Serious Eats, the holy grail for all foodies out there.

From the name itself, I can tell you it’s the real deal. Serious Eats can be your new best friend in finding local restaurants’ reviews, food recipes, food talks between NYC community burger specialists, pizza specialists and “photograzing.” Being created by Ed Levine, the author of New York Eats, Serious Eats has incorporated exceptional food bloggers, critics and chefs. From my first visit, I have spent at least two hours in reading the articles while googling about the featured restaurants. It was a really fun thing to do on a gloomy Sunday afternoon. Although there are still many other food blogs out there that are ready to be discover, I believe that I have hit the jackpot with Serious Eats.

About Serious Eats

Why is Serious Eats a successful website?

I believe that it has a balanced web strategy between business, community and technology (as I referred it to Jeremiah Owyang’s Web Sphere). Serious Eats web strategist must have already incorporated all the skills needed to balance and maintain the three spheres’ elements. As a result:

  • Serious Eats appears to be more trustable and reliable among chefs, professional and food enthusiasts
  • Serious Eats is known among millions of people around the world
  • Serious Eats is among the top food blogs within the industry
  • Serious Eats has become an exclusive online community for food enthusiasts to interact and communicate with each other throughout the world

Community

As Owyang mentioned on his article, a good website strategist must understand the need of current and potential customers. In this case, Serious Eats has been successful in doing so. Although there are many blogs out there that can satisfy the cravings of many food enthusiasts, Serious Eats is able to distinguish itself among its competitors for being the top player because of its content excellence. Instead of focusing on only one concentration, Serious Eats is able to provide its users with varieties of information on food. So, visitors from different food interests may have reunite at Serious Eats. Whether or not you are a great cook who’s looking for new recipes or local food enthusiasts in New York City and Chicago or someone who just loves food, Serious Eats will always meet your high expectation.

Again, communication is not a one way street. Someone needs to respond on the other side. Other than being a successful food blog, Serious Eats is also an online community for serious food enthusiasts all over the world. Although currently it only serves big cities like New York and Chicago, I am pretty sure Serious Eats will cover other places soon. I am excited to see it serves in cities like Boston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Inside Serious Eats’ online community, you’ll be able to communicate with local or nationwide Serious Eats members in these different categories:

  • Food
  • Drinks
  • Sweets
  • Pizza
  • Burgers
  • Cooking and baking
  • Eating out
  • Food media and news
  • New York
  • Chicago
  • Site Feedback

Moreover, as a member, you’ll be able to enjoy the feature of “photograzing” which enable you to upload pictures of your dish. Then, other members will be able to comment on it. Nevertheless, you don’t need to be a member to browse pictures on photograzing. Lastly, to keep you updated, you can subscribe to different kinds of Serious Eats newsletters. Based on your interest, you can subscribe to a weekly newsletter, specific city newsletter, drinks newsletter or even recipe newsletter. You are basically in control of satisfying your food news craving. As a result, Serious Eats has enabled unique interactions between its users through its online community.

Business

From the business perspective, Serious Eats must have clear goals and objectives to be a successful website. As an online blog community for food enthusiasts, Serious Eats has been chosen to be an award winning top food blog and able to reach 1.7 million visitors monthly, as it previously mentioned on its page. From this statistic alone, Serious Eats has been able to deliver its objectives through its strategies in bringing those many visitors to the site. Through my analysis, I have assumed that Serious Eats’ objectives are:

  • To create and establish a reliable website for food enthusiasts that provides varieties of food related topics and unique blogging experiences
  • To establish an online blog community for food enthusiasts to interact and communicate between one and another, within food related topic categories
  • To increase an awareness of Serious Eats among its target users
  • To increase sales in advertising
  • To position Serious Eats as a go-to food blog for food enthusiasts among its competitors

Aside from delivering its objectives to its end users, I believe that Serious Eats has also been able to satisfy its internal teams through these objectives. Not only that the end users are its priority, but so as the creative minds behind all of those insightful articles. By publishing about 150 articles a week (accoring to the “About Serious Eats” video), there is a lot of creative thinkers being involved. For them to create these many articles are not easy. Those articles need to be well research before getting publish on Serious Eats. Meaning that, the bloggers will have a huge responsibility to publish a well thoughtful article while meeting the objective of the site and readers’ expectation. Looking at Serious Eats’ content quality, I am confident that the site has been able deliver its business objectives to both internal and external stakeholders.

Possible Competitors:
Epicurious, Food Network, Chow, and Smitten Kitchen.

Technology

In terms of technology, Serious Eats is pretty advanced in delivering its content to its users. Just like any other successful blogs, Serious Eats has performed tremendously in keeping its users up to date with its content. Its medium has involved pictures, video, RSS subscription, email subscription, “members only” features, links to social media platforms, FAQs page and search engine within Serious Eats’ website. As a result, Serious Eats’ administrators will be able to monitor traffic, new and old users’ interactions as well as users’ feedback. As technology advancement grows rapidly today, I believe that there will be a new addition to blog technology in near future. As long as Serious Eats able to keep up with the technology progression while delivering its objectives, Serious Eats will surely continues to be the top online community for food enthusiasts around the world.

Conclusion

Overall, the three spheres are all interconnected. A website cannot be as successful if they only adopt each element individually or even two out of the three. It needs to maintain a balanced proportion of each sphere for it to be well-established in the long term. If Serious Eats is not as successful currently, perhaps I would not have found it in the first place when I googled “food blogs NYC.” It must have enough traffic to position itself as the second best result in Google. I am looking forward to see new features that Serious Eats will offer in the future. Perhaps, It may includes some new cities. But for now, I am digging for more updates on New York City’s local dishes and restaurants. I cannot wait to expand my “foodie” list on my Blackberry. As Serious Eats continues to grow, its sphere’s balance may have been updated; each area may have been weaker or stronger than one and another. However, if Serious Eats is able to maintain a good balance throughout its lifespan, it will carry its success for a long term and become a successful example for other food blogs across the world.

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