What The Coronavirus (COVID-19) Means For SEO

Over the first quarter of 2020, the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has disrupted almost every area of our lives. It has created a “new normal”, making people reorder their priorities and make changes to their daily lives. The pandemic has also caused a blow to many businesses that have to roll with the punches thrown by declining economic activities as people change their habits.

SEO plays a key role in helping businesses stay relevant in the time of coronavirus. To further protect their businesses from the effects of the ongoing pandemic, it’s best for business owners and marketers to review their current SEO strategies for the year.

Here are some SEO considerations you need to look at and how you can incorporate them into your marketing strategy in response to the impact of COVID-19.

 

Changing search behaviours

 

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Consumer behaviour and search trends will largely vary at this time, both for essential and non-essential businesses. Pharmacies and grocery stores are more likely to see a surge of search queries on the products and services they offer. Oppositely, a decrease in search interests on brands, products, and services considered non-essential may be observed this time as consumers prioritize their most basic needs. 

Brands should consistently track and analyze data like organic search sessions and conversion rates, making sure to update forecasting and historical reporting to assess the impact of COVID-19 on consumer behaviour. Google Search Console, Google Trends, and your keyword tools will be your best friends during this time. Use them proactively to understand changes in search behaviour and interests based on relevant keywords and topics related to your company and industry.

Below are the important data and analytics to note:

  • Sessions and impressions may decline. But if rankings remain as is, the decrease can be a result of COVID-19’s effect on search interest.
  • Sessions and impressions may remain as is. However, a low conversion may mean that users are still interested in your products or services but are not ready to purchase yet.

 

Limited bandwidth and availability resources

 

During this pandemic, businesses may have limited development resources. Rather than implementing new features in your website, it may be best to prioritize fixing bugs that are directly affecting your site’s performance. Check to see if search engines are indexing, crawling, rendering, and ranking your website to prevent potential issues in the future.

 

Beefed up content strategies

 

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It’s important for businesses to acknowledge the specific effects of COVID-19 to their industry. This way, you can create clear messaging around the disease. If your business is deemed essential or directly affected by COVID-19, you might want to make a dedicated page to capture traffic related to coronavirus and then add links to your website’s key pages.

You can also try producing a series of video content. As people become more active online, they will have plenty of time to watch videos. Consider creating relevant content to capture their attention. Study your SEO insights to gather possible topics for your video content. 

Most importantly, when developing your messaging, keep in mind the importance of social distancing. Consider making content on creating DIY projects around your product/service from which users can derive value while on home quarantine. Avoid using language that runs counter to COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Main Image Credit: Engin Akyurt | Unsplash