How is COVID-19 Affecting PPC Campaigns?

It is fair to see that most (if not all) businesses across the world have been affected in some way by the Coronavirus outbreak, and pay per click agency Manchester is no exception. Unless you are a seller of toilet roll, face masks, or hand sanitiser the impact of the COVID-19 virus on your PPC campaign is probably not going to have been a positive one.

With this in mind, PPC specialists Manchester have taken a closer look at some of the trends that are already emerging in PPC, and what we might expect to see happening over the coming weeks and months.

Virus search is on the increase

Coronavirus is not the first global epidemic we have seen in recent years – but it is the one that has caught our attention the most. We dealt with Swine Flu in 2009 and Zika in 2016 but these didn’t have much impact on the world of search at the time. Ebola, in 2014, saw a sudden spike in interest at the time – possibly due to the 40% increase in death rate. However, Coronavirus (which interestingly has a lower death rate of just 2%) has had a huge impact on search trends in a short space of time.

We might think we are at the peak of interest in the COVID-19 virus at the moment, but actually we are likely to continue to see high levels of interest over the coming weeks – rather than a rapid dwindling of interest as seen with the previous viruses. These levels of interest are also likely to vary by location, depending on where the virus spreads to next and there will be tremors in performance still to be seen even when it looks like we are over the worst.

News headlines have an effect on performance

The tremors in the performance that we have mentioned above can be largely put down to impacts of media headlines – particularly when it comes to the travel industry. Data has shown that the travel industry sees a significant drop in conversion revenue and volume in the days immediately following media reports of a major spread in the virus such as the first US coronavirus case and the first death of a Chinese doctor from the virus.

This trend in drops in conversion volume and revenue the day after major developments in the spread of the virus will continue, even after the spread of the disease has died down and travel restrictions are lifted. We are still likely to see decreases in performance for those industries related to breaking news headlines in the media.

Increase in the performance of cleaning product campaigns

On the other hand, we are seeing some great performances in some campaigns due to the Coronavirus, most notably those related to cleaning and protective products. Hand sanitiser, antiseptic wipes, and face masks have all seen a notable increase in interest, so if you are one of the small proportion of advertisers who will benefit from this, then congratulations!

Increase in Google shopping

The other winner in this is eCommerce retailers. With many Governments and health agencies advising people to stay home to stop the spread of disease, people are turning to online stores to fulfill their essential needs (and also their non-essential needs!) So, eCommerce campaigns and Google Shopping campaigns especially, are likely to carry on seeing an increase over the coming weeks and months.

Increases in keyword volumes

This is probably the least obvious of all the PPC trends relating to Coronavirus, but COVID-19 related search terms are actually quite likely to be infiltrating your search queries no matter what industry you are in. While your PPC account may have absolutely nothing to do with Coronavirus or any terms relating to it, you should look closely at your campaigns to make sure there is nothing out of the ordinary happening.

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that because you don’t see virus terms coming through your account, you are not being impacted. For example, you may see an increase in search on branded terms and start to celebrate, as you don’t realise these terms also include the words ‘cancellation’ or ‘refund’ – so make sure you take a close look at everything.

If you are looking for a PPC agency in Manchester with a proven track record for getting results then please get in touch with the team at SEO MCR today. We have what it takes to position your business at the top of the search engine results pages (SERPS) for keywords that convert into enquires, calls, and sales.

About Simon Thompson

Simon is an SEO veteran with 17 years experience in the field. He's overcome the Google pandas, the Hummingbirds and is preparing for the Tigers!

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We offer professional SEO services that help websites increase their organic search score drastically in order to compete for the highest rankings even when it comes to highly competitive keywords.

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