Food looks like a pretty rich (no pun intended) site, with community, Answers and video among other features. But what’s more interesting — on a “meta-level” — is the contrast between Yahoo!’s approach to verticals and Google’s.
Compare “Thanksgiving recipes”:
* On Google: One box result and then the vertical experience. Fast and clean, but there’s no context here.
* On Yahoo! Search: With shortcuts at the top. If you click on the “recipes” shortcut, you’re taken to this structured, directory experience. There’s more “context” here.
* On Yahoo! Food: This is a much deeper and more complete experience.
And Yahoo! Food has the benefit of content from, among others, AllRecipes.com, EatingWell.com and domestic and culinary divas: Martha Stewart and love-her-or-hate-her Rachel Ray.
This obviously presents brand advertising opportunities and cable-TV like demographic targeting (plus Yahoo! registration allows for that). This will also be a way to reach a large female audience — that’s not a sexist comment, I love to cook too, but women are clearly the target audience (see Martha, Rachel et al.)
Greg Sterling is the founding principal of Sterling Market Intelligence, a consulting and research firm focused on online consumer and advertiser behavior and the relationship between the Internet and traditional media, with an emphasis on the local marketplace.