Orange County SEO companies are currently witnessing the global impact of COVID-19 on market trends through the shift in consumer demands. Few could predict the dramatic effects of this worldwide pandemic before the last few weeks happened. Now, with most business employees operating from home, schools closed, and social distancing policies put in place, everyone has to adjust to a new way of life.  

Many businesses are needing to temporarily close brick and mortar shops, restaurants, offices and transition to online markets and delivery services. While this is certainly an unprecedented time, Orange County SEO companies urge businesses not to give up. With a better understanding of the current market, businesses can start to adopt campaign strategies that will strengthen their brand and invite buyers in when things have settled down. 

Social Distancing and Store Visits

One of the most apparent market shifts since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak is the decrease in visits to brick and mortar stores. Shelter-in-place and social distancing policies have forced non-essential businesses to temporarily close and other businesses to adopt strict regulations to limit shopping traffic.

Store visit numbers began experiencing a slight decline at the end of February. By March, numbers had plummeted by 24%. As infection rates increased, stores experienced a 46% decline in the second week of March and then an 80% decline by March 12th. These numbers were motivated by the CDC’s recommendations as well as a growing concern from all sections of government. April sees the lowest numbers yet with a 90% decrease in store visits. 

Online Markets

Now that businesses are unable to sell to consumers directly, it has become increasingly important for them to create an online marketplace with their products. SEO companies in Orange County are noting a relatively steady trend in Google searches, which means that companies need to focus on their digital presence. Here are some of the best ways to increase brand visibility online: 

  • Create or improve your company website. Your website should be user-friendly and optimized for mobile devices. Make sure that your copywriting is polished and your information is accurate and up to date.  
  • Use Google My Business. You will want to showcase your address, phone number, business hours, and reviews through Google My Business. With more people searching businesses online, you want to make sure that you are visible and attractive to potential customers. If business operations have changed since COVID-19, be sure to update this on your account. 
  • Communicate to customers through social media. A lot of people are on social media right now and are using these platforms for their source of information. So, you want to make sure you are posting in order to show up on people’s feeds. Give brief company updates and share information that will engage your consumer. 
  • Offer products through an online market. While brick and mortar stores are experiencing a decline in customers, eCommerce is experiencing a great increase. By offering your products through online markets, you are improving your opportunity for sales. Make sure that you optimize your online shops with attention to product descriptions, titles, and images that will work well with search engines.  
  • Focus on digital marketing. You will be able to drive more traffic and sales to your website by implementing digital marketing campaigns. For the best results, you can hire Orange County SEO experts to create and maintain your company strategy.  

Trending Searches

As one might predict, key phrases like “COVID” and “coronavirus” have been dominating search engine traffic since last month. Now, these kinds of phrases are paired with more mundane searches like “restaurant” or “travel.” 

Now that we are facing a changing environment, new topics are trending on search engines and new internet users are participating. This means that digital marketing has become an even more important way of reaching out to audiences. In order to stay relevant, it is important for your business to pay attention to keyword search reports, find negative keywords in advance, and take advantage of COVID-19 trending topics. 

Mobile Searches 

Interestingly enough, reports have shown that people are doing far less internet searching on their phones and, instead, searching on their laptop or desktop computer. Mobile searches tend to rank high in normal circumstances where people are constantly on the move. Mobile devices are small and portable, after all. So, now that people are at home, many companies are seeing a decrease in mobile search traffic for their campaigns. 

Since March 16th, mobile searches have declined by an average of 24% and tablet searches decreased by about 19%. However, desktop searches have only noticed a slight 18% decrease during the weekdays and 7% on the weekends. 

With a decrease in Google search ad traffic, especially among mobile devices, companies are looking for ways to readjust pay-per-click campaigns and save themselves money. The best way to do this would be to look at device bid adjustments from the past in order to learn how traffic has shifted and then look into flexible bidding strategies that will help you reach your goals within your budget. 

Network Opportunities 

Even though Google search has experienced a decline in numbers, the fact is that more people are on the internet nowadays. Current research shows that internet use is up by 50% since the COVID-19 outbreak. So, this means that consumers are integrated into other networks. The Google Display Network has expanded by 13% in the beginning of April and YouTube views have grown by 21%.

It is important for businesses to keep up with Google SERP adjustments by joining new networks and, thus, gaining visibility. Marketing ads should transcend the usual Google search methods and reach new eyes in this time of uncertainty. Consider applying Google search partners to your campaign in order to increase traffic and, eventually, sales for your business. Also, you might want to start publishing video campaigns on YouTube. This platform is saturated with users now that everyone is at home and looking for ways to fill their time. Use YouTube as a tool for reminding customers why they like your brand and keep directing them to your website.

There are so many ways that our world is changing in the wake of COVID-19, which is why it is important for businesses to stay informed in order to prepare for the coming weeks. Companies will be navigating a strange time in the market. However, with digital technology at our fingertips, this transition may be a little smoother. And that’s something to be grateful for.