Throughout the current economic slump, businesses have to adjust to a “new normal”. This means that new strategies must be created in order to keep cash flowing into the company.
Adjusting to this new normal can be challenging, and businesses will try to cut costs to offset the lack of revenue. This sometimes includes axing expenses such as investment into content marketing in order to weather the storm and make it to the other side of the economic downturn.
However, investment in content marketing or SEO during an economic downturn can actually help a business stay afloat and continue to garner revenues, as it is a cost-effective method of reaching a very large audience in a short amount of time.
Why Now is the Time to Remain Invested in Content Marketing
During the current COVID-19 global pandemic, many people are at home for most of the day and using their electronic devices. This means that as a society, we are spending more time now than ever searching the internet, making content marketing even more vital than before.
Since many people are electing to shop online as opposed to in-store, being on top of the SERPs is more important than ever because the first place many online shopping trips begin is on Google, Bing, or another search platform.
Being at the top of the SERPs means that more people will visit a company’s website, and logically, sales should increase—leading to more cash in hand, enabling the company to pay bills and employee salaries in order to stay afloat. By being at the top, or close to the top, of search engine results, a company can gain both national and global exposure as well as potentially increase its consumer base.
When looking into building SEO optimization during a time such as this, there are few key components to consider: ensure SEO content is in-line with your consumer base, keep all content on your website up-to-date, use the increase in social media usage to your advantage, and focus on building and maintaining trust with consumers.
Consumers are on Social Media Now More Than Ever and You Should be Too
With a large percentage of the general population being confined to their house, it is natural that social media will be relied upon even more to pass the hours. Since the start of the COVID-19 wave, social media usage has increased by nearly 61%.
Now is an ample opportunity to reach a large number of people and make them aware of your company’s brand. In addition to that, search engines like Google, consider major social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn as brands with high trust, and therefore, those websites PageRank in Google is quite high. Therefore, the more people who like and share your content, the more those social networks can aid in your company having optimal SEO; after all, visibility is key.
A few methods that can be used to increase your company’s social media visibility and engagement are giveaways/contests, calls to action in your content and linking your blog posts and articles directly to social media channels via share buttons so that consumers can easily share your content.
Continually Audit Current and Future Content
When times are ‘weird’ it is key to expect the unexpected, but also do your best to plan for future content. Assuming your company has an SEO strategy put in place, there is probably content that is waiting to be pushed online for consumers to see and read.
In regards to current content, it is ideal that your website and its content matches the current landscape. Now is a great time to have an employee review the entirety of the company website to ensure all information is both accurate and up-to-date, or outsource to another firm which specializes in content management to ensure your content is optimized.
By keeping website pages updated, the website pages are more likely to remain on top of search engine results. After all, major search engines prefer that their users are receiving the most up-to-date information.
As for the future, if your company has a solid SEO plan, that means that there is also content waiting and planned months in advance to be posted at specific times; however, what may have been thought to be relevant 3 months ago, probably isn’t at this unprecedented time.
Remember to take this time to review all future content so that they are in-line with consumers’ wants, needs, and desires at this time.
For example, if you have planned to publish a blog post about ‘the top 5 things to do with your friends this summer’, perhaps change it to reflect the current situation and read something like ‘the top 5 things to do with your friends while safely practicing social distancing’.
This will both be sure to pop up in search engine results as ‘social distancing’ is a keyword right now, and it will also remind your consumer base that your company cares about their well-being during this time.
Build Trust with Your Target Audience
We currently live in a very unfamiliar world and are constantly being bombarded with this idea of a “new normal’. With the change comes resistance, and the best way to usher in change is to build a sense of trust with your target audience.
The longer the COVID-19 pandemic goes on, the more insecure people are bound to feel. This means that a bond needs to be fostered and nurtured between your brand and your consumers. After all, consumers are more likely to use a brand that they trust, and the more trusted your brand is, the higher your content will be on a Google SERP.
A few great ways to build trust are to publish content that is relevant to your audience during these times, keep the highly-visible content on your website up-to-date, and be extra mindful of the language and messaging used as consumers are very wary during these times.
As we continue navigating through these uncertain times, remember that now is both a time to reevaluate business and marketing strategy and delve deeper into SEO to ensure your company can benefit from this uncertain time come to the inevitable upswing in the economy and to build trust between your brand and consumers.