EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 3127 - August 09, 2013     3 of 4

Food52 Serves Up Provisions for Kitchen and Home Shopping

By David A. Utter

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Food52 is a content-plus-community website that has just launched a commerce component. The site, popular with foodies, is now banking on its audience to purchase kitchenware and items for the pantry.

The food and cooking devotees who visit Food52 for ideas like Olive Oil-Saffron Ice Cream with Burnt Orange-Caramel Swirl now have a new site feature greeting them. Called Provisions, the ecommerce side of Food52 offers products for the kitchens of its site visitors.

Provisions has opened with a variety of kitchenware and other items for dressing up one's table or pantry. Some of their highlighted items are featured as Collections, like a Citron Presse set. This collection has complementary content like a video on making great lemonade, and a demonstration of how to zest citrus properly.

Food52 is doing a few things that look like an intelligent way to help Provisions compete in this niche. They face competition not only from dedicated brick-and-mortar stores like Williams-Sonoma, but heavily trafficked grocery chains like Kroger, which have aisles of similar products.

One choice Food52 made for Provisions was to offer free shipping with purchases of $50 or more, with a flat rate of $8 for orders under that amount (certain items may have additional shipping surcharges, noted on those product pages.) Shoppers have shown they will abandon shopping carts when faced with what they perceive as high shipping costs, which has made free shipping a sought-after perk for consumers.

Food52 also encourages the first purchase on Provisions with a discount offer. Further, they are hoping to attract important word of mouth referrals. A referred friend receives a $10 discount on their first purchase, and the referrer can receive a $25 credit when the friend buys something.

About the author:

David A. Utter is a freelance writer based in Lexington, KY. He has covered technology topics from search to security to online business and has been quoted in places like ZDNet and BusinessWeek. He considers his appearance on NPR's "All Things Considered" with long-time host Robert Siegel a delightful highlight. Send your tips to and find him on Twitter @davidautter and on LinkedIn.

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