These Are The Search Engine Optimization Ideas That You Should Take Note During COVID-19
Local companies know much better than almost any other model exactly what it means to fully be involved in community life. You are the great neighbours that are there to serve, inspire, and sustain individuals and traditions that make your city a fun and unique place to call home. But what search engine optimization ideas should local business owners take note at this time of crisis?
Since we’re investigating this subject of what local businesses can do in this time of the COVID-19 pandemic, let’s honour all that you have always done to take care of the community as a local marketer or business owner. Thanks a lot.
Here, you will find local SEO ideas that can really make a difference for your company in the coming weeks, innovative support resources, and advice from the world’s finest local search engine optimization professionals, and several serious thinking a greater local future.
Adhering to All Regulations
First of all, begin each day with a review of both national and local news to be certain you are complying with the changing regulations for your country, county, and city. Policies created to mitigate the damage of COVID-19 vary widely from region to region, and your company must always be aware of which kinds of services you may supply with this powerful situation.
And, although social networking can be a wonderful connector within the community anytime, stay away from misinformation and, sadly, frauds in the days ahead. Obtain your news from trusted sources, and in case you are not sure about interpreting a guideline, immediately get in touch with local authorities. This post doesn’t take the place of regulations and laws particular to your community.
Probably the most helpful thing any local company can do at this time, whether or not it is deemed an important or non-important service, is to give precise information to the community. There are three key areas to get this done:
Local businesses already knows exactly how huge a role Google has as intermediary between brands and the open public. This remains correct throughout this difficult time even so, Google’s local product is not running at its full strength. Joy Hawkins’ article for Local University on 23 March details the limited assistance for or complete discontinuation of Google Q&As, posts, descriptions, reviews, and owner replies. It is a growing scenario, with local SEOs revealing various outcomes daily. For instance, some professionals were able to get some, although not all, Google posts to publish.
At the time of writing this, there are four areas you can use to communicate current information to the target market via GMB. However, please be informed that several edits might take a few days to go into effect:
Google is permitting companies to edit their business name field to reflect that they’re offering curbside services, takeout, and delivery. For instance, should your current name is “John’s Grill”, you are allowed to temporarily change it to “John’s Grill — Delivery Available”.
When regulations are keeping you inside the house, yet you still want buyers to reach you on your home or mobile phone for details, update work answering machine to reflect the adjustments and change your GMB phone number on the proper new number. Ask your local search engine optimization consultant for assistance.
The discussion regarding how best to demonstrate that your company either has no hours or limited new hours is continuous. It’s perceived that the best path for the present is by using Google’s method of setting special hours. This option ought to be especially helpful for multi-location enterprises that can set specific hours via the API.
It’s important to know though that there are some instances of companies setting specific hours for clients and then clients getting emails from Google asking if the agency has closed. This can alarm those clients. But as of now, it seems that when Google gets responses to this prompt that indeed, the organisation is shut down, they merely include a message concerning this on the listing as opposed to getting rid of the listing completely.
Last 25th March, Google implemented a “temporarily closed” button within the “Info” tab in the Google My Business dashboard, as confirmed by Joy Hawkins. Making use of this button may temporarily decrease the rankings, but it will be possible to take out the label in the future with a hope that it’ll eliminate the impacts of suppression. It’s recommended to use this button if this applies to your company as we must put safety first over any other things.
Update 3/30: Danny Sullivan of Google has clarified in a tweet to Damian Rollison that the “temporarily closed” feature must never impact the rankings.
COVID-19 update posts
Google has newly created a Google posts type that you will see as an alternative in the Google My Business dashboard. While other posts type were already published sporadically, COVID-19 Update posts can be seen to be going live. Make an effort to fit just as much details as you can about the updated status of the company into one of these posts.
Aside from the edits you carry out to the GMB listing, update the most visible local company listings on other platforms to the best of what you can do, including on:
- Yelp: Yelp has unveiled a new field named “temporarily closed”. This is meant to be used by businesses which can be or is going to be closed (but not permanently) because of the COVID-19 outbreak. Businesses have to include the “end date” for when the enterprise status will end. Because of the uncertainty surrounding timelines, Yelp is letting users to provide an “estimate” for the end date that they can still update in the future. Special opening hours can also be added on Yelp. Neither field is available in the API.
- Bing: A “Temporarily closed” business status is available in the Bing Places dashboard. This is currently unavailable within the API.
- Update 3/30: Bing added a “temporarily closed” flag within the Bing Places dashboard and also the API to ensure companies can mark themselves closed because of COVID-19.
GMB may be suffering from support problems at the moment, but luckily, you still have the entire control over your site as a home base for providing relevant information to the public. Here is a checklist of recommended items to update on your website by the time you can:
- In case you have a blog, utilise it to keep people up to date about the availability of services and products.
- Place a site-wide banner on every page of your site with key details like “temporarily closed”, “drive-up service available 9-5 Monday – Friday” or “storefront closed but we can still ship to you.”
- Give complete details regarding how the company has been impacted by COVID-19, and include any services that you can still offer to the customers.
- Should your main contact number has been updated due to the situation, update that contact number everywhere it is mentioned on the site. Don’t forget about footers, headers, or sidebars as places your contact info might be.
- Modify location landing pages in large quantities or individually to reflect new hours, closures, and new temporary offers.
- It might be a valuable community service at the moment to create new content regarding local resources in your community for all types of basic needs.
- Make certain that the hours of operations are correct everywhere they are stated on the site, such as the home page, about page, contact page, and landing pages.
- Make sure the site consists of highly visible links to any social media platforms you will be utilising to offer up-to-date details.
Email and Social media
No matter if the social community of your target market is YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or other platforms, there has never been a much more crucial time to utilise the instant communication these websites give. It was Fred Rogers who famously stated that in times of crisis, we must “look for the helpers.” Individuals will look to your brand for support, and trying to find ways that they can aid, as well.
If you have the chance to use social media to focus on not just your own services, but the services you find are being offered by other companies in your city, you’ll be strengthening your community. Ask your customers and followers to amplify details that can make existence less hazardous or far better at this time.
Of course, email is among the top tools currently at your disposal to message the entire base regarding updated special deals and conditions. One good practice advice at this time is to be certain that you’re just communicating the essential things. Don’t imitate those brands that exploit COVID-19 for self-promotion, rather than putting the needs and concerns of the customers first. Be a helper!
Beyond your local company listing, social media platforms, websites, and email, never forget about offline media for making more useful informational efforts. Contact local radio stations and speak to local newspapers if you have details or offers that are beneficial to the public.
If you can, operate fully
While the social safety net varies widely from country to country, study any offers of support being made to your company and use them so you can stay operational throughout this pandemic. Here are six changes your company must carefully look at to find out whether or not implementation is feasible:
- Meet essentials
Should your company meets local, state, or federal regulations that allow it to carry on operating as it’s regarded “essential”, here are the ways various company models are adjusting to current problems:
- Drivethrough, curbside pickup and delivery are allowing some brands to provide takeout food, groceries, medications, and other essential goods to customers.
- Some healthcare appointments may be taken care of via virtual or phone meetings, and a few medical facilities are offering drive-up testing.
- Ranches and Farms can provide honour system roadside stands to enable customers to access fresh produce, dairy products, and meats with appropriate social distancing.
- Grocery stores and supermarkets with no built-in delivery fleets are being infected with third parties with this support.
- Organizations and brands that donate services and goods to satisfy essential needs are taking an active part in community support as well.
- Firms that care for vulnerable populations, laundry, banking, and fuel can implement and communicate the extra actions they’re taking to stick to sanitation guidelines for the customers and staff’s safety.
- E-commerce assessment
In case your local business already has an e-commerce component on the site, you’re already far off ahead in getting properly set up to keep selling via shipping. If you’ve not even implemented any type of online selling, look into these options:
- Should you lack a credit card processing assistance, PayPal invoicing can be used in a pinch.
- If you have credit cards processing machine, the most basic option is to take orders over the phone and then ship them, enable curbside pickup, or deliver them.
- Virtually Connect
When nothing at all can replace in-personal relationships, virtual meetings would be the next-great-thing and could always keep lots of business models operating at a significant level, regardless of the pandemic.
Begin functioning towards a stronger local potential
“I would say generally it’s critical for business owners to connect with one another. To the extent they can join or form groups for support or to share ideas, they should. This is a terrible and scary time but there are also potential opportunities that may emerge with creative thinking. The ‘silver lining’, if there is one here, is the opportunity to reexamine business processes, try new things and think — out of necessity — very creatively about how to move forward. Employees are also a great source of ideas and inspiration. ” — Greg Sterling, Search Engine Land
Local search engine optimization UK isn’t just a job but more of a personal belief system that well-resourced communities will be the strongest. Each city, town and community reveals roughly the same requirements, which can be depicted like this:
This chart shows the framework of a prepared, healthy and functional society. It also shows a plan for covering the basic needs of the people, the cooperation needed to run a stable community, contributive roles anyone can play to support culture and like, as well as relief from inevitable disasters. Furthermore, other things that can be seen include an abundance of healthcare experts, experience educators, artisans, and a peaceful platform for complete human expression.
COVID-19 is one of the major disasters that has happened over the past years. The California’s wildfires and pandemic were also among those disasters that taught people which areas are self-sustaining and which ones are not prepared to take care of each other in good and bad times. While state and national governments have a serious obligation to the well-being of their citizens, it is still important that local communities are doing all they can to self-sustain as much data points on the chart above as possible.
Although it’s mentioned that necessity is the mother of invention, and it definitely makes sense that the current moment will lead to the invention of new solutions to ensure the safety of the communities, there are still models for sane development in the work others have contributed. According to Greg Sterling: “now is the time to bring creativity to bear, to connect with fellow local business owners and community members, and to begin planning a more realistic and livable future.”
Right now, you will need to make those relationships virtually, but the objective would be to emerge from this period of crisis with willpower to make local loving a lot more sustainable for everybody. You can begin by asking very basic queries like: Which facilities could be converted here to produce soap, or bathroom tissue, or medical supplies? What do we need to do to attract more doctors and nurses to this town? Where is the nearest farm, and how many people can it feed?
Humankind should dig deep today for its very best solutions to serious problems, and that may start right where you stand, locally.
Google To Support Structured Data For Announcements Related To COVID-19
Google has released new help documentation around utilising structured data particular to COVID-19 announcements. Google stated on Twitter “We’ve released new docs on how to add structured data for COVID-19 announcements to your web pages. This isn’t yet visible in Search results. That will happen in the near future, but you can add data now to prepare.”
Google stated that due to the COVID-19, a lot of organisations like schools, governments, health organisations and more are releasing urgent announcements that impact schedules and several aspects of daily life. These include the new availability of medical facilities, rescheduling of events, and closure of facilities. These are several examples of the announcements.
- Announcement of shopping restrictions and revised hours
- Announcement of events transitioning from offline to online, or cancellation
- Announcement of a shelter-in-place directive
- Closure notice (for example, shutting down a public transportation or school)
- Quarantine guidelines
- Travel restrictions
- Disease spread maps and statistics
- New drive-through testing centre notifications
Details in this blog about COVID-19 and search engine optimization tips for local businesses were gathered from https://www.inc.com/peter-roesler/tips-for-responsible-smart-marketing-during-covid-19-pandemic.html and https://www.searchenginejournal.com/google-my-business-launches-new-post-type-for-covid-19-related-announcements/358908.html. Check out the complete story by going to these links.
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