Updates To Your Business’s Web Presence With The Covid-19 Pandemic In Mind

By Matt Bertram

By Matt Bertram

Matt Bertram is Head of Digital Strategy at EWR Digital. He is a nationally recognized expert in SEO and the Co-Host of the top rated SEO Podcast, "The Unknown Secrets of Internet Marketing." Author of Build Your Brand Mania: How to Transform Yourself Into an Authoritative Brand That Will Attract Your Ideal Customers with contributing articles in Forbes, Search Engine Journal and numerous other publications pertaining to digital marketing.

Prior to the novel coronavirus epidemic, 85% of consumers did online research before making a purchase. Now that most of the world is on lockdown or have shelter in place, this number’s probably jumped even higher. Because of this, it’s more important than ever to polish your online presence and know how to prepare for a pandemic so you can keep your customers happy. Here are some updates you can make to your business’s web presence with the COVID-19 pandemic in mind.

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Update Your Google My Business (GMB) Listing

GMB has already automatically updated all business listings to show that business hours may be affected by COVID-19. However,  you should go ahead and manually update the business hours, so customers know your company’s still open and there for them.

Not only does this give them better information, but this can also help you rank higher on search engines. Google has said they’re favoring businesses that update their GMB listings.

Be Transparent                  

There’s no mistake about it: COVID-19’s heavily impacted business across all industries, especially manufacturing. So, if you offer a product, chances are, fulfilling and shipping orders will be delayed, and you’ll run into more bumps than usual.

Don’t sweep those problems under the rug and pretend like you can run your business as normal. Instead, it’s better to be upfront and transparent with your customers.

Of course, you can always claim you have normal shipping speeds and hope for the best, but your customers will probably be more upset with you than if you’d just been honest from the start. Everyone’s going through the pandemic together, so they’re sure to appreciate the transparency and will be pleased if they get their orders sooner than expected.

You can add a small message on each product page, as well as the cart confirmation page. That way, customers are fully aware of what to expect.

You can also take to your social media accounts to let people know what issues you’re facing (such as having fulfillment problems or are overwhelmed with orders) and what you’re doing to remedy them.

Add a Header or Notice

If COVID-19 disrupts your normal services, then you want to make it clear to customers that you’re doing your best to follow government guidelines while still serving your customers to the best of your abilities.

A great way to accomplish this is by adding a header at the top of your homepage. Make it colored if possible (such as red) to grab the readers’ attention.

Here, you can explain what steps your company’s taking to ensure everyone’s safety. For instance, maybe all your employees are working from home. Or, if you must be in the office, perhaps you’re providing all employees with hand sanitizer and are practicing strict cleaning rules.

If you’re in the food industry, inform visitors that you’re still providing food services. You can also let people know that while they can’t sit in to eat at your restaurant, they can order takeout or support your business by buying a voucher for later use.

Use this space to inform visitors about what changes have been made to protect both them and your employees. You can also let them know about your new business hours.

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Create a Special COVID-19 Landing Page

While most places are doing shelter in place or lockdowns, these policies may not always stay the same. When they change, you want to inform your customers quickly.

A great way to do so is by having a special COVID-19 landing page on your website. Here, you can put up-to-date information regarding how you’re handling your business.

Not only does this show customers that you’re proactive about providing safe and efficient services, but it can also help you generate more traffic. For example, you can link to this page on your company’s social media accounts and drive more clicks to your website.

This can also help you rank better for search engine optimization (SEO). Web crawlers will see that you have a dedicated page for the pandemic, which will help move your website to the top of search engine results pages (SERPs).

Consider Making Video Updates

People love to view videos instead of reading text, especially in these trying times. It helps put a face to your company and lets people know that you care about them.

Understandably, people are scared in these uncertain times. However, if you can provide them with personal videos that are sympathetic to their situations, it can help give them some comfort and build brand trust.

If possible, you should have some C-level deliver some of these important pandemic messages, such as the CEO or CMO. This will make your customers feel appreciated when the heads of your company take a few minutes of their day to give their customers some reassurances.

Make Mindful Updates to Your Business’s Website

Now that you know how to make the appropriate updates to your website with these pandemic tips, perhaps it’s time for a redesign. It’s always a great idea to refresh your look and content every once in a while, as it ensures you’re still relevant to your target audiences.

If you don’t have a website, then you’ll certainly need the help of professionals to get you up-to-speed. Additionally, we can also create a sharp-looking website for you.  Whatever website service you need, feel free to get in touch with us. We’ll help you improve your online marketing and grow your business!