It may take years to fully understand the social and economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. We’ve seen businesses forced to close, millions of Americans sheltering in place, and so much more.
Things are beginning to look a little brighter as multiple states have initiated an economic relaunch. Businesses across the nation are now opening their doors again. But, that doesn’t mean we’re out of the woods as social distancing guidelines still remain in place.
So how can your business survive this crisis? In this guide, we’ll discuss 10 ways you can use your website and digital marketing to boost consumer engagement and persist during COVID-19.
Did you know you can use your website to adjust to the changing search trends? Many of the top search terms now include “coronavirus”, “delivery”, and “take out”. Other trending terms include “loan” and “healthcare”.
Add these top search terms to your SEO and posts. For example, if you offer delivery from local branches, highlight that by using it as a keyword. Make sure that the trending search terms you’re adding to your SEO are products or services you offer.
If you don’t know how to find the trending search words, Google can help you. Go to Google Trends and enter a search term that aligns with your offerings.
For example, if you provide HVAC repair services, try “HVAC repair services during COVID-19”. From there, you’ll see if that term is trending or if searches for it have decreased.
Having a website is useful for posting FAQs and guides for your products and services. During the coronavirus lockdowns, it’s also the perfect place to answer online queries sent by customers or visitors.
What if your website is showing contact numbers for your office, which you can’t access? If this is the case, direct visitors to a platform where you’re available to answer their questions.
Add a post or update on the website that will direct them to your business Facebook page, for example. Almost three-fourths of Facebook users visit the site daily. You can expect your business’ Facebook page to be a primary platform for communication.
Don’t forget to develop your website to be responsive and mobile-friendly. Expect that most people will be using their mobile devices to find you, and the success of your website can be compromised by an outdated, desktop-only design.
Having a website or an online page is one of the best things that help improve your brand’s credibility. However, it’s not as simple as building a website and listing your products or services. Also, don’t count on having a Facebook page as enough online identity.
When you create a website for your brand, you create a virtual space for your business. Like your physical stores, you want it to be presentable. Other than a Home page, add an “About Us” page and contact pages.
If your website doesn’t have a blog, this is the time to create one. Blogs are a great way to express your emotions, your passions, a topical issue or getting the word out about what your business offers.
For example, your business is a café that also sells coffee beans. You can add a blog entry about the health benefits of coffee. You can also write editorial-style pieces.
A big advantage of having an online website is that you see the important numbers in real-time. This way, you know how well your website or marketing strategies are doing. You can also use the metrics to cut or change your approach to a marketing strategy.
Some of the most important metrics to keep an eye on include the following:
Google Analytics can help you keep track of these real-time key indicators of business performance. To get started, take a look at these tips to get the most out of Google Analytics.
Keep an eye on these metrics and use what you find to your advantage.
A lot of businesses fail because they don’t have a good understanding of their audiences. They end up using unnecessary and ineffective marketing tactics. If you want to avoid making marketing mistakes, you need to know your visitors and what they want.
However, to become more familiar with them, you need to engage them first. You don’t need direct contact. You can use the metrics we mentioned to learn more about them.
You can also use tactics that encourage direct engagement.
A straightforward example is using surveys and polls. You can also note their feedback on your digital content. The customer service department can also tell you more about your clients.
Speaking of customers, the COVID-19 crisis is a good time to gain new ones. Imagine what people do in their homes while they’re in quarantine or self-isolation. They’re doing more than binging on Netflix or scrolling through their Facebook wall.
Some people are using this downtime to take up a long-forgotten hobby. Some people are looking through shopping sites for something they may want to get. Others feel bored and want to find new and exciting things.
If you have a small business website, this is your chance to gain new visitors and customers. You want to cater to the last two groups. One way to do it is to focus on localized ads. Two great platforms for creating targeted, locally-relevant ad content are Facebook and Google.
Locals are your best hope at finding a stable income. They’re more likely to visit your stores once the quarantine eases up as well.
The current crisis is presenting to you the chance to expand your social media presence. With a captive audience bored at home, your customers are on social media looking for news, entertaining stories, and more.
If you don’t have social media channels yet, establish them now. Invest in Pinterest, YouTube, and Twitter channels or accounts. They are three social media platforms that are giving Facebook a run for its money.
Once you have a social media channel, start posting content, and post updates on it. Don’t forget to create and follow a schedule for content posting on social media. Also, since the coronavirus is still present, add updates about it.
Express your gratitude for clients and the community for their support. If your business is contributing to the community or employees, show it on social media. Post how you’re keeping employees and customers safe during the pandemic. In time, this will help build your social media engagement.
Being available online gives you more flexibility in business. Unlike the confines of physical spaces, the Internet’s virtual space is wide and infinite.
When you have a website, you have the chance to grasp more opportunities. For example, there are a lot of tools for business websites that can help make managing it easier. Thus, you don’t need to worry about learning to code or doing everything by yourself. For instance, if you use a content management system (CMS) like WordPress to build your website, you’ll have a versatile and scalable infrastructure that is widely-supported.
And, to a point, you can be available to answer questions from clients 24/7. With the help of AI chatbots, you can program them to respond to the questions most asked by clients.
Having an online presence isn’t only about having a business website. It’s creating a safe space for your customers and visitors. You can create this space or include it on your website.
If you have a blog or announcement section, consider enabling visitor comments. This will allow potential customers to ask questions or provide other feedback. You can even create a forum for customers who want to connect with other customers.
If you don’t want to enable comments on your blog, you can utilize social media to encourage discussion of your brand or products. This will also help boost your business since you’re encouraging user-generated content (UGC). UGC is also effective in boosting your social media metrics.
Cutting down on traditional print media can limit your non-digital marketing reach. Don’t market less — market smarter.
Remember to focus on smarter use of print. Everything from well-designed business cards to brochures can help raise awareness, especially in small bursts.
And with face-to-face meetings minimized, you can use direct mail to maximize your marketing budget by getting your message in front of your audience. And you can connect the mail piece to your digital marketing by including your website, social media icons, or even a landing page URL.
With the quarantine driving people to spend more time online, you need to be ready with your website and marketing. If you want to know more, contact us. We’re here to help!