Time for a coronavirus lockdown strategy

 

The unprecedented (that word is used a lot lately) social distancing measures implemented as a result of the coronavirus pandemic has left many of us uncertain about our futures and the impact it is having on broader society.

 

In the past few weeks, we’ve been encouraging our clients to get proactive in informing their customers and website visitors of how their business is handling lockdown and coronavirus. In creating and implementing the first stages of a tailored coronavirus strategy we’ve seen amazing results, including increased time spent on websites, decreased bounce rates and referrals from highly credible sources (fantastic for SEO).

Now that lockdown is establishing itself, most businesses have been able to implement new measures. Yet, how many emails, or messages, or posts have you seen about the success of these new business operations? It seems like at the onset of the lockdown, almost every other email was about closures and changes in business operations. We want to know – are these new plans working?

Now has never been a better time to inform and assure customers that your new operations are working. In doing so, you’ll see increased loyalty and, depending on your business, increased sales.

So, what’s your strategy?

Why create a coronavirus strategy?

As time has progressed, government advice has settled – more so in the way it’s delivered (we know where to go for it) – and many businesses have been able to establish a more solid communications foundation.

In essential services, such as food delivery, banking and in the funeral industry, people are clamouring for information on how the current situation impacts their circumstances – information is highly sought after.

In other industries, particularly the hospitality and leisure industry, and in some respect the youth education industry (due to holidays and homeschooling), we’ve seen organic demand for information decrease. This is likely to be because people are assuming that services are not operating as they would normally – slowly forgetting your brand.

This tells us that (although it’s nothing new): people need information about what your business is doing. They are either seeking it, or your business is suffering because they are making an assumption about what you’re doing.

Do you have a plan to address either of these customer needs?

Your coronavirus strategy

Everything you do doesn’t have to be centred around coronavirus. In fact, it’s probably best not to do this. However, the impact coronavirus is having on your business and the world should be a strong driving force with everything you’re doing right now.

While creating a strategy sounds like a lot of work, it doesn’t have to be. Start with the basics, and you’ll find it will develop over time – also, things are continuously changing, so a little flexibility in your plan might not be a bad thing.

The goal at this time is to show it’s ‘(a new way of) business as usual’, providing reassurance to customers and promoting how your new successful business operations are working.

Where to start?

As you would for any product or service, create somewhere where your customers can find information about your situation. An easy solution would be to create a landing page on your website.

Keep the landing page, simple, factual and use this to direct visitors to either more information, guides and related services.

What’s next?

Once you have a central place of information related to your individual situation, you can start building content around this; this can include:

  • At-home advice or guides to help them get through lockdown – using (and hopefully referring others to) your brand guidance
  • Promoting success stories on social media – either from your customers or from your employee’s perspective 

Now is the perfect time to invest in digital advertising to help drive traffic where organic traffic has decreased. 

This is also a great time to invest in social media. More people are spending more time on social media. Why not remind them of your brand and promote your activities. Don’t forget social media isn’t about posting; it’s about engaging with your audience – read our social media guide.

Success in this strategy

In cases where we have helped implement such strategies, we’ve seen an increase in key website reporting metrics.

In one example, within the first week of providing factual information, along with developing supporting guides and linking to exisitng services, the initial results were incredibly positive: 

  • Before promotion (purely organic traffic), dedicated COVID-19 pages accounted for over 14% of page visits
  • As time progressed, these pages were indexed, and Google traffic started to land directly on to the page. This landing page traffic had a 0% bounce rate, with all visitors moving to further pages
  • The average time each visitor spent on these COVID-19 pages was 3 minutes (site average 1:30)
  • Increased referrals (associated websites) linking to these pages as a source material – one being a local council website (.gov)

Results taken from Google Analytics, W/C: 06th April 2020.

How WONDROUS can help?

If you need help starting or creating your coronavirus strategy, then hi! We’re WONDROUS, we can help. Call Richard on 01384 590099 for more information, or email richard.conyers@thisiswondrous.co.uk.

Tuesday 21st April