A recent survey by Conductor revealed that due to COVID-19 and the extension of the social distancing guidelines, many marketers anticipate a decrease in their annual marketing budget, but still expect goals to remain the same. How are they expecting to reach their goals with a smaller budget? Shifting their focus to SEO.
Regardless of the status of the economy, people are still going to be making purchases, and more people are shopping online than ever before. Why wouldn’t you want your brand top of mind when users are making buying decisions?
Here are 4 tips to improve your SEO strategy during this uncertain time.
1. Build Trust with Your Content
Many brands are offering deals and promotions to customers once the pandemic has passed and the world starts to go back to normal. Forrester released a report that found that consumers are doubtful that companies will follow through on the promises they make during this time. In a time of crisis, trust is more important than ever. With so much false information and uncertainty circulating, it’s essential to separate yourself as a brand that’s reputable.
Another Conductor study reported that consumers find brands that deliver educational content are much more trustworthy than those that don’t. Right now, consumers are looking for answers to their questions from brands they trust. This isn’t the time for salesy content. Focus on creating content that brings real value to your audience.
2. Make Necessary Changes to Current Campaigns
If you had any campaigns active before the situation of the world changed, make sure to perform an audit on it and make any necessary changes. Be sure to review any social posts or content pieces you had scheduled out ahead of time as well. You don’t want to come across as insensitive or tone-deaf to the situation.
SEO is much more than just technical efforts, and this is one of them. You want to be the voice of different customers across the organization. During times like these marketers need to have a heightened awareness of customer sensitivity. Even though it’s difficult to suspend a campaign that a lot of time and resources went into creating, it could be more harmful to your brand in the long run if you keep it running. For example, Corona received harsh backlash via social media when they went through with launching their Coming Ashore Soon campaign for its new seltzer line.
3. Constantly Manage Your Reputation
Managing your web presence during times of crisis is another crucial element of gaining and maintaining the trust of customers. Dated or inaccurate information can confuse or even hurt your audience, making you look bad in the process. Here are some tips for managing your online reputation during this time:
- Update any online listings or hours. Review your listings on all search engines, social media, review sites, and any other platform you may be on. Make sure your listings are updated with any changed hours, service suspensions, or revised contact information for any departments or location.
- Monitor the status of COVID-19 and respond with empathy. Even in times of crisis, consumers are talking about business online. If you don’t already have one in place, it’s crucial to implement a comprehensive review and response strategy. Adjust your response technique as needed, remembering to be as sensitive and transparent as possible during this time. Ignoring comments and reviews puts your credibility and brand trust at great risk during a time of crisis.
- Engage with customers across all platforms. Businesses are receiving an influx of questions on all levels across all platforms. Prepare to answer these questions on Google My Business, social, and any other platform with timely and accurate information. You might even want to consider setting up a FAQ on your website or third-party directories if you’re getting many similar inquiries.
- Monitor the Google Search Console. Web traffic, especially organic, is a big indicator of where demand for your product or services has shifted. Spikes or declines in traffic may show you what information is most important to your audience and help you decide your response strategy.
Improve Your Security Efforts
Hackers are trying to take advantage of the current situation and those that are in need. Many are using malicious malware to promote discounts, giveaways, etc. Some hackers are even using branding of trusted companies for phishing attacks, including the World Health Organization and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Now that many people are working from home, the threat becomes even greater. From a business perspective, here’s what you can do to ensure your website’s security:
- Monitor log files for crawl errors.
- Implement Single Sign On.
- Implement HTTPS.
- Update any plugins or apps being used.
Everyone is looking for answers right now. If you can position yourself at the top of a Google SERP with credible information, it can have endless benefits, even after the pandemic is over. Trust is what consumers want and need right now. SEO is a needed investment to build that trust.
At Onimod Global we understand how vital SEO can be. Search engine optimization is our core attribute and a pillar of our strategy. We develop organic search engine optimization campaigns that deliver increases in organic traffic through an increase in natural rankings on major search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo. We are a trusted Google Partner and continually excel with their products. If you need assistance with SEO, or in any area of digital marketing, contact us today.