Ever wonder why bloggers can’t just get to the darn point when sharing a recipe? We get to hear about the inspiration for the dish, where the food was grown, how their grandma made it, and then wayyyyy down buried somewhere between grandma and the footnotes is the actual recipe. Sometimes I get so fed up at not being able to find the recipe that I give up and just start searching not for the best recipe, but just the most easy to read recipe.
And then I feel kind of bad because I know why they’re doing it. I’ve had to do it myself. It’s all about making search engines happy, which brings more traffic. Plus, the longer the post is, the more room they have to stuff in a bunch of ads. Nothing makes me skip a recipe faster than an ad every paragraph. Half the time I can’t tell if I’m making chicken or trying to cure toenail fungus. And why are there so many ads for toenail fungus anyway??
You need to hit that wordy SEO sweet spot of about 400-600 words, or if you really want to go for it, over 1000! Problem is, most attention spans run out in the first 100 words or so. You’ve just read about 225 words in case you were wondering how much that is.
You can only write so much about a recipe, so they’ve got to give it a good backstory and throw in some bonus facts. Set the scene with some keyword rich descriptions and maybe add in some good subtitles. Search engines love that stuff. And you have to give them what they want if you want to be the top chicken recipe in a world of a billion chicken recipes. What’s going to put your Lemon Pepper Chicken on the top of the search results? Maybe it’s the one that has a lengthy paragraph on the health benefits of the spices in Lemon Pepper Chicken. Or the one that includes the full history of the lemon and all its culinary uses.
But for me, it’s still the one that just gets to the point. Here’s the dish, the ingredients, put them together like this, ta-da! And I will search page after page of results until I come across one that just tells it to me straight. Or at least one that has the “Jump to recipe” button. I love those!
As a side note, while looking something up for this post, I ran across a post about long recipe posts, but from a recipe blogger’s point of view. She mentioned some of the things I did here about SEO and space for ads, but she also included that recipe bloggers pour their heart and soul into their posts just like any other blogger. She felt insulted by people commenting to just “get to the point” and making fun of the long posts. She likened the comments to someone telling a woman to “shut up and get back in the kitchen.”
And while I wouldn’t take it that far, I do have to respect the effort put into creating a long and word rich post. But I have no respect for overuse of ads. I still hate those. Now here’s an ad where it should be- out of the way and at the bottom of the post: