An Always-Present Recipe Box: ZipList Reaches 1M Users

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Startup ZipList says 1 million users have used it to find and save more than 4 million recipes.

The service launched less than a year ago. Users can search for recipes, save them, and convert them instantly into ingredient shopping lists. There’s a mobile app so you can bring your list in the store.

Founder and CEO Geoff Allen says that over time the strategy has shifted away from being a standalone site and app, and the company is now focused on working with publishers and other partners to offer recipe search and/or shopping list capabilities across the web. Publishers who add ZipList supposedly see, on average, a 15 percent increase in pageviews. The company is working with 125 partners — including Martha Stewart, The Daily Meal, and Ming Tsai — and Allen says he wants that number to increase dramatically, because ZipList’s recent growth shows that the strategy is paying off.

“The only thing that matters about a universal recipe box is that it gets used,” he says. And that means ZipList should be available anywhere people might find recipes.

These aren’t just Web partnerships, either. For example, if you’re watching the Simply Ming TV show, you can text a recipe code to ZipList and it will save the recipe in your account. Allen says the company has also signed up a yet-to-be-named print publisher for similar text and QR code capabilities. And later this week, ZipList will be officially announce integration with recipe site SimplyRecipes.

When ZipList introduces new features and pages to someone’s site, it splits the ad revenue with its partners. Allen says that as users add more recipes to their accounts, ZipList knows more about what their tastes are and their food plans, so it can deliver more targeted ads.