There is no denying that COVID-19 has had a huge effect on the increase of internet usage. People are now using the internet more than ever for a wide array of activities such as electronic transfers, virtual meetings, gaming, movie streaming, mobile apps, social media, and more. However, what has seen a decline is search traffic to non-essential businesses. However this does not mean that SEO is now no longer important, quite the reverse in fact! There are huge benefits of SEO for small businesses, even the nonessential ones right now and in this article, we take a look at why exactly SEO matters during the coronavirus pandemic.
Seo Looks Very Different At The Moment Depending On The Industry.
Depending on how your business is categorised right now through the lens of the new COVID-19 regulations, it will either be seen as essential or non-essential. For relevant and essential businesses, SEO is important for standing out and getting chosen over competitors in search results. However, for nonessential and temporarily closed businesses, SEO seems much less important right now, but it is still as important as ever! There are some clear steps you can take in order to drive traffic to your website even during these uncertain times.
Covid-19 Is Trending But Evergreen Content Is Still Key.
This is certainly true at the moment, and maybe so for a long time yet, however, evergreen questions your customers have, will remain relevant long after the outbreak has subsided. Not to trivialise COVID-19 as it is and will be a serious issue for a long time yet, but it simply will not be at the forefront of search forever. So yes, write about trending topics as they relate to your business, but these pages will naturally decline in traffic over time. Also since leading brands and high authority websites will dominate page one results, they are less likely to rank in the first place. In contrast, content written on evergreen topics will stay relevant and accumulate traffic over time. So for longterm growth, it is never a bad time to publish evergreen content.
Increase Quality Traffic And Long-term Gains.
SEO is not just about traffic, it is about increasing quality traffic. SEO during this time can help you identify quality leads as visitors who are finding their way to your website in the face of opposing trends are most likely very interested in what you have to offer. Also, in order to gain trust from search engines which is a key aim of SEO, you need to be producing consistent output slowly overtime so to not do any at all, would be counterproductive.
Search Is Going To Become More Important
We know that traffic to many websites from search engines may be down, however, traffic to search engines is not. This makes search engine marketing an even more mission-critical pursuit for businesses down the line whether this is achieved via PPC or SEO.
Particular Benefits For Small Business Of Seo During Covid-19
The article so far should have convinced you about why SEO is still important for marketing strategies in general, but there is particular importance for smaller businesses:
Local Search SEO
Local search is crucial so by using local SEO tactics you will be able to appear in “open now” and “near me” searches. So many people are unable to venture far so this really is a crucial strategy if you are still open. You may attract customers that never even knew you existed before, but with a local search, they are now ready to visit and spend money with you. If you are not able to trade as are not one of the essential businesses, then it is still worth investing in local search SEO as you can use this to direct people to important information such as opening times and what you are about as a business so they can find you easily when restrictions are eased. That way you will be set up for success when you are back up and running. You will also be aiming to be part of the #supportsmallbusiness movement that has occurred during the pandemic. Your SEO strategy will connect you with people looking for local businesses to support.
Gain a competitive edge for when lockdown is eased
SEO gives small businesses a competitive edge because the informative blog posts you publish as a part of your SEO strategy make for trust-building, familiarity-breeding and quality encounters. Once lockdown is eased, who do you think customers will gravitate towards when shopping again - those who they have never heard of or the ones who they remember seeing during all their time spent searching during lockdown?
SEO is completely free but requires time.
Now more than ever you should be focusing on SEO as it is free. However, it does take time, of which we all have more of right now than ever before! So given that we have more time, and we are all watching our spending make SEO a priority for your small business and you are simply not losing anything!
Key Seo Strategies To Implement During Lockdown
You may already be an SEO expert, or this may be the first time you have really looked at prioritising your SEO? Whichever camp you fall into hopefully after reading this article you know how important it is to act now. To help form your plan, here are some key strategies worth considering:
Update already-performing content
Target both coronavirus-related search terms and unrelated search terms
Write and stockpile high-quality, evergreen blog posts
Create or update your Google My Business listing.
Conduct a local listing audit
Get featured in a local media article with a backlink to your site