Three SEO Strategy Points to Consider for Q3/Q4
With an economic hit comes an economic return. Considering the current circumstances, and the impact of Covid-19 across several businesses it's crucial to make a come back in Q3 and Q4 of 2020. The need to effectively manage online portals is crucial in aiding the potential to return to expected revenues. This includes determining strategy based on market shift, analysing audience trends and adapting through agile marketing campaigns. There are multiple ways to tackle the current economical hit we have all faced, including optimising your SEO strategy. Your typical SEO Strategy can be broken down by product groups/service areas, both becoming core parts of your strategy.
Search Auditing for a New Type of Audience
The biggest change within search marketing across Covid-19 is driven by uncertainty. Mirroring the global economic downturn, Covid-19 has proven to impact search marketing drastically. This has expectedly, majorly impacted volume, trends and even the types of keywords used. If you're looking for a way to recover from the impact of Covid-19, it's crucial to consider how to best optimise your SEO strategy.
At a time where uncertainty is in the air, we are now facing a lot of unpredictability. The most prominent change in search volumes is the demand for products, which I'm sure we have all encountered. With demand for services and products increasing, the most dominant change is in spending and general uncertainty in the market. Worry around product availability or service delay in the current climate, seems to be what consumes us most as human beings. A fantastic example of this is an increase in delivery times.
An SEO agency would predominantly consider two core areas when doing analysing search volume:
- Search volume using industry tools (based on overall averages across a region)
- Impressions/Clicks within Google Search Console
Generally, these two areas of research would align with each other. This allows the SEO company to build a picture of areas where keyword targeting would be most effective.
The issue is, uncertainty and unpredictability in the marketplace can mean volume now shows what would be 'expected' data. Tools used to analyse search volume will end up using data from not only previous gatherings, but also previous years. Whilst this is the case for majority of tools, Google Search Console will present data from last year vs. this year (at extremely different rates).
Despite this, you will notice actual data may change week on week, and focus on government announcements, local lockdowns and time of year.
Google Search Console's part in your SEO Strategy
It's essential to use GSC independently, and pair with news or user sentiment tools. By doing so, you will be able determine live data to your website. Not only can you determine live data to your website, but you will also be able to see the ongoing changes to research where needed. In the long run, you would be building up a picture of when and why your search volume changes. This will allow your SEO strategy to both adapt and prepare for any potential changes in search trends.
Understanding the impact on volume vs. previous expected years allows for two things to happen:
- Effective planning for a potential peak
- Options previously not targeted as becoming core to the success of the campaign
Maintain Visibility on Covid-19 Practice for E-A-T
Expertise, Authority and Trust should be at the core of a website strategy. Presenting each of these elements is essential to improving your online performance and ranking factors.
Messaging around practices in place for Covid-19 are important to ensure E-A-T is maintained. Particularly in areas where the service is directly impacted by the virus. An example of this is if there is a need for in home delivery, factory workers or food.
Elements of B2B services such as facilities management or maintenance contracts must also need meet a minimum standard. All of which is done in order to improve and ensure all information is clearly translated to the website.
Within this work, it is recommended to use Google’s Beta version of Covid-19 structured data to ensure all announcements from your business a listed effectively. This means that any changes to operations, deliveries etc. are provided in a structural manner.
Over time, the value of needing this element will reduce, but until Covid-19 isn’t a daily global issue, the need to protect your business from its impact is!
Adapt an Agile SEO Strategy Ongoing
Perhaps an obvious thing to say is to be adaptable given the current climate. It's crucial now more than ever to be flexible, and ensure Covid-19 impact is reduced where possible.
For this reason, the recommendation is to split an SEO strategy in two areas and offer agile strategies led by user sentiment and global data trends:
- One: Evergreen strategy that targets overall broad terms – eg. the vanity or goal terms within a website strategy
- Two: A portion of the strategy that is accommodated to movements in the market and changing the product to fit, or the website to ensure, the needs and requirements of the customer and Google are met
Where possible it is best to map minimum and maximum targets for conversions, conversion rates and traffic to the site. Using existing business data to map will provide a strong base line and pair this with rolling 7 day averages for targets for high volume businesses, and longer term such as rolling monthly for B2B providers.
This will allow you to do two things:
- Clearly adapt a strategy to market conditions – including moving targets based on changing trends (both up and down)
- Utilise budget in the right places – creating a budget per campaign or resource per campaign and moving this appropriately will provide ability to target market trends for the most effective search campaigns
Overall, market data suggests Q3/4 will be turbulent and involve a lot of change in terms of how agencies approach campaigns and how business adapt to trends. Having a clear plan which is agile to market conditions will be at the core of successful SEO campaigns.
Polaris is an award-winning SEO agency in London specialising B2B, e-commerce and the healthcare industry.