With recent restrictions imposed by Boris Johnson regarding the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses are finding themselves in an unprecedented position. All “non-essential” brick-and-mortar shops are closed for the time being to slow the spread of the virus. In such volatile times, it can be difficult for businesses to know the right steps to take to inform their customers of their current situation.
One thing is certain – with a nationwide lockdown in place, it has never been more important for you to manage your business’ online presence.
Here are four simple steps to help you do just that…
Local business listings
If you are predominately a local business, search engine results will often display a directory listing, rather than a direct link to your website. Therefore, it is essential that you update your Google My Business listing – and other directories you might be part of – to reflect your current situation. This is where you should list any changes to opening times, delivery slots, new contact details, and so on.
With so many people staying at home, platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are seeing unprecedented use. This makes them the ideal place to inform your followers and customers of any changes to your service. Update your social media pages with your new operating information and take the time to engage with your followers to reassure them that you are still there for them.
If you own or manage a Google My Business account, you can create Google Posts that keep your customers informed about the status of your business. Such posts show up in search results and on map searches for seven days. This reassures your customers that you are on the case, and that your information remains relevant.
There are two main additions you should consider. The first is a general blog post that you can set as a temporary home page, advising your customers of the immediate impact of COVID-19. Here you can set out all the changes you have had to make, address concerns regarding stock, delivery, opening times, remote working, and so on.
The second addition is an FAQ page. Many businesses already have one of these for common queries relating to their industry and products. Including a section on COVID-19 towards the top of the page will help address the immediate questions your customers might have.