CoronaVirus: Why Pulling Back Your Investment in SEO will Hurt Your Business

Bharat Patel

Head of Digital Marketing

Investment in SEO during CoronaVirus effect

There is no need to panic – you might have heard these words at least a thousand times, if not millions, in the past month, haven’t you?

With so much uncertainty going around us, there doesn’t seem to be any reason why you should NOT get the jitters!

There is a truckload of information on how to combat this deadly virus – washing hands frequently, maintaining social distance, not touching your face, etc.

But when it comes to businesses trying to lower the financial impact, they’re faced with additional issues on the professional front.

Here’s a stat of how Covid-19 has impacted businesses in various countries so far:

If you are a business owner, then even you’d have thought about the following questions:

  • How much impact will Covid-19 have on my business?
  • How can I advertise my products and services during this crisis?
  • SHOULD I be investing my time in SEO or pull back?

The answer to the last question is – you must ABSOLUTELY focus on your business’s SEO. This is because:

During such a crisis, the majority of businesses tend to stop or pull back their investment in SEO (your competitors, for instance!) whereas the smarter ones use the opportunity to their advantage.

In this situation, you’ve got two options:

  • First Option: Let fear take the better of you, stop all your SEO efforts and prepare for very little end-results.
  • Second Option: Pull out all stops with regards to your marketing campaign and boost your SEO rankings!

You can opt for the second option, but how would you go about it? How will you up your SEO game amid the Coronavirus fear?

Before we take a look at how you can deal with this situation, let’s understand the top SEO challenges that every business is likely to face.

Top Upcoming SEO Challenges

With the Coronavirus situation becoming worse every hour, the impact of the outbreak on various businesses and its SEO strategy is already starting to show up.

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Here are the two challenges that most businesses will come across:

Challenge #1 – Change In The User’s Search Habit

As the Covid-19 outbreak is rapidly spreading to various countries, the search behavior of customers has started changing on a much deeper level. 

Here is a Google Trends stat showing how the search result for “Coronavirus” has shot up over the past few months:

Source: TechCrunch

With this search, there has also been a surge in the demand for a few medical products, like surgical masks and household supplies. Here is a stat for the same:

Source: 3Q Digital

In the meantime, search for other products has seen a huge downfall. With the fear surrounding this virus constantly increasing, people have obviously stopped looking for a few things.

If you’re offering products that are the need of the hour, then you’ll for sure see a surge in the Google Search dashboard.

On the contrary, if you belong to another industry such as retail, entertainment, or travel, this crisis might take a huge toll on your business, especially in terms of your finances.

This, however, is just the tip of an iceberg!

But simply making changes to the existing content won’t help boost the SEO rankings. In fact, with people concerned more about their family, health, and finances, it’s highly likely for them to search for nothing but the latest news on Covid-19.

Challenge #2 – Decrease In the Demand For Products

Ever since this outbreak has spread globally, the economic experts have estimated that the worldwide economy is going to take a huge toll – nearly $2.7 trillion.

Here’s a stat showing the global economic impact of Covid-19:

With this being the case, several businesses have already started taking the heat and it seems like things are going to become worse in the coming few weeks.

All this only means one thing – it’s going to be a huge challenge for businesses. And if the market witnesses a downfall, the demand for several products will decrease and tighten the customers’ pockets.

How Can Businesses Retaliate To Covid-19?

Now that the SEO challenges and changes in the global economy have been discussed, it’s time to understand how businesses can up their SEO game and come out with all guns blazing!

But how can a business respond to this crisis?

The impact of Coronavirus will vary from one business to another. But the one thing they shouldn’t do is – PANIC.

Rather than responding emotionally or pulling back the investment in SEO, it’s best to be smart and make the most out of the situation.

Although your business’s entire sales might get affected due to Covid-19, or perhaps the global economy, you can still recover the loss by taking critical SEO actions now!

Doing so will put you a step ahead of those firms who are still contemplating and help boost the SEO rankings once the curve starts to flatten.

Here are two other ways that can help businesses come out ahead of their competitors:

1. Stay In The Game And Use The Situation To Your Advantage

You think you are the only one who is considering trimming down that SEO budget. But guess what… you’re not!

Presently, several businesses (yes, even your competitors!) out there are on the verge of making a similar decision. Perhaps, the majority of them might even pull back their budget.

Due to this, their SEO rankings would go down the list. And by the end of a couple of weeks, it might have taken a huge hit considering that Google’s algorithm would’ve recognized that their site has nothing new.

Every time the ranking of one of your competitors’ moves down, your rankings go up by one point. It also means the most desired page-one sector can be obtained easily, especially for those who don’t pull back.

In fact, you could even land a worthy SERP provided you stay in the SEO game. With the economy getting tighter, when the users will finally start looking for other products, you could be at the forefront.

2. Pull Out All Stops With Regards To Your SEO Strategy

No matter which industry you belong to – eCommerce store, mom-and-pop business or a B2B service – you might face certain losses in the next couple of months. There is no escape from this situation!

But ultimately, everything will start going back to normal.

Although we might witness a few changes after the entire crisis stabilizes, SEO would still be the best way to go!

Source: Brandfly

As a business, pulling back might seem like the best option. But if at all you can take the heat, for the time being, you’ll certainly be able to come out even stronger on the other side.

With things being extremely slow during and after this crisis, you’ll definitely not have many competitors to face. So if you go ahead with your SEO strategies now, you will see faster results once everything settles. This will also help you boost your ROI in the years to come.

The Bottom Line

When it comes to SEO, the majority of businesses have been spending nearly $80bn every year and it is for a reason – it does work!

Source: Agency 41

Yes, these are scary times that we’re currently in.

But even a small SEO action could turn out to be a massive plus point for the business in the near future.

Now is not the time for you to panic; in fact, you must position your brand at the forefront of the upcoming economic recovery. And remember, SEO can do that for you!


In today’s time, when the success of a business depends on its capability to respond in an efficient manner the Coronavirus outbreak is surely going to be a trial by fire. 

The ones who double down or stay in the game will notice excellent results once the situation starts to normalize. But the ones who pullback? Well, not much can be said for them.

By continuing to focus on your SEO and ensuring your business is at the forefront of the customers, you will be able to make it through.

This is why now is the time to work on your content and properly optimize your website. If you do that successfully, you’re in for a treat!

When the entire world starts to crumble and you don’t have much control over the situation, you do get to make your own choice – either hide from the issue and play it safe or work on what you really have and emerge as winners.

At Brainvire, we firmly believe in empowering our people to achieve their maximum potential and become successful.

For us, it is all about being a trusted partner and committed to assisting people – various clients, of course; but at the end of it, it’s about those people who’re a part of it and affected the most during such a crisis.

We, at Brainvire, also remain determined in assisting the clients with their website development needs. So if you’re looking for a digital enabler to help you during this Coronavirus situation, feel free to get in touch with us!

About Bharat Patel

Bharat is a digital marketing expert who can help you grow your business. He has helped hundreds of companies just like yours succeed in the digital world. So if you’re looking for an experienced, knowledgeable, and trustworthy person to help you reach more customers, You’re in luck. Bharat is here to help you with your digital marketing needs.

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