"Only by continuing to invest in SEO services can you keep up with the competition."
David Pask-Hughes, Head of SEO at Ricemedia
New data from a survey conducted by Birmingham SEO agency Ricemedia has found that just 37% of businesses are planning to increase their SEO spend in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic. This is despite 67% of businesses and marketers considering their digital strategy to be more important now than a year ago.
The Coronavirus pandemic has had a huge impact on marketing with consumers turning to online stores to fulfil their shopping and service needs. The IMRG Capegemini Online Retail Index found that UK online retail sales jumped 32.7% YoY in May, the highest increase since 2008. With GlobalWebIndex finding that half of global consumers won’t return to shops for some time, digital marketing becomes an important channel for businesses.
In a bid to understand how marketing strategies will evolve over the next 12 months, in the wake of Coronavirus, Ricemedia surveyed 100 businesses and marketers, ranging from small businesses (10 to 49 employees) to large businesses (250+). The survey focused on how marketers and business owners viewed their current strategy and processes and if any changes have been made.
This new data is quite surprising considering the sudden increase in more users depending on online shopping and services to protect themselves and their families from the virus. For businesses to stand out from the crowd online, they need a good SEO strategy behind them.
Instead, the biggest focus of digital marketing strategies is on other digital channels. 45% of respondents said they will increase their social media spend. Social media use is on the increase again with Facebook reporting an 11% increase in daily users YoY for Q1 2020.
Meanwhile, 41% will increase their email and automated marketing spend as they look to keep their current customers from considering alternative options.
There is good news for agencies as the vast majority of respondents were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with their digital marketing output during the pandemic.
Even with good satisfaction levels and increased spending in other areas, not investing more in SEO could leave a business vulnerable to being overtaken by their competitors in organic search. The question is, can a business recover the market share they could lose if they don’t invest more in search marketing?
David Pask-Hughes, Head of SEO at Ricemedia said, “It’s clear to us that businesses are being cautious about their marketing spend while they wait for their sector and the economy to stabilise after the Covid-19 pandemic. However, this leaves businesses vulnerable to losing their market share as their competitors increase their marketing spend. Only by continuing to invest in SEO services can you keep up with the competition.”
For more information about Ricemedia’s history, their expertise and some of the clients they are working with, please visit https://www.ricemedia.co.uk/.