Covid-19: our 10 tips for your SEA strategy!

Accusing the blow after this first month of confinement the French will have to patiently take the trouble to keep the device until the provisional [ ) May 11. If the crisis has strongly changed consumer trends we were also telling you about the impact of Covid-19 on digital marketing and the sectors most affected by this pandemic. An unprecedented situation obviously leaves room for many questions for advertisers about who maintain their business but also whether or not to keep their budget investments in particular on the shutter digital . In order to provide you with some answers, both in strategic and operational terms, our Ad & # 39; s experts have compiled for you 10 most frequently encountered SEA problems at the company in recent weeks.

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Impact Covid-19: 4 phases between advertisers

Before tackling these problems, it is essential to clearly distinguish the degree of impact on your business and its announcement post-growth containment. In fact, in this crisis experienced by brands, they obviously do not all face the same challenges and we see 4 impact phases clearly emerge with specificities and specific optimizations for each. Discerning the phase your company is currently in will allow you to have a better appreciation of the strategy to be implemented, but also of the avenues within reach.

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Phase 1: struggle to survive

Held by a business model that prevents them from operating, these are the companies that have had the greatest impact and whose very existence is in danger . We are talking here, for example, about the event, B&M catering, the travel or entertainment sectors that no longer have the possibility of generating turnover in current conditions and which consequently limit their marketing investments, prioritizing short-term cash flow . If SEA does not adapt to your maintenance system, we strongly recommend that you take advantage of this time to optimize your account structure but also to explore other sources of optimization such as SEO, monitoring or even reviewing the resources created.

Phase 2: keep your efforts

We recognize in Phase 2 advertisers whose situation is very difficult ( but not existential ) such as the retail or beauty sectors. If the latter do not see their survival threatened, they still face great uncertainties about supply and demand as well as about the capabilities of their supply chain . If the period requires the utmost caution, we must still try to maintain a presence by capitalizing on some rover levers such as Search or Google Shopping, while constantly re-evaluating its objectives according to the evolution of the situation. We must focus as much as possible on campaigns that can bring an immediate cash flow to to preserve its cash flow as well as on the categories of products that can still be sold at to guarantee its maintenance until Acquisition .

Phase 3: reorientation of its business

It stands out in phase 3, advertisers continue to operate, but they must orchestrate a transition of their distribution channels : from online stores or from France to new markets to continue to seize the opportunities. With the Web at the forefront, it is important to continue investing in marketing to support and develop the business, while by reallocating offline investments to digital based on changes in business demand and dell & # 39; user. How can you continue to engage your audience and talk to your customers? Price policy, returns, promotions, communications, added value, … Rethinking your strategy by innovating and adapting: for example, many restaurants have maintained an activity moving towards home delivery.

Phase 4: being agile and responsive

Unlike advertisers in phase 1, we obviously find in phase 4 the least interested advertisers such as food, education, online solutions or even medicine and pharmacy. Looking at an increase in demand or at least one ISO volume, the challenge here is to look for new ways of communicating and to stay in touch with customers for help in this particular period . With a strong focus on growth and Brand Safety it is essential to remain agile and responsive looking for new potential opportunities in terms of scope and performance. One of our advertisers from Phase 4 of Ad & # 39; s up, for example, has developed an export strategy to strengthen its business, which is currently growing very strongly.

Impact Covid-19: 10 tips for your SEA strategy

# 1. I have less traffic on my website

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The French are currently giving the priority to essential purchases (even if this trend is starting to fade), it is possible that your site sees decrease traffic . In this case, remember that Smart Bidding naturally adapts to changes in volume and will continue to use your settings to provide performance. If you are interested in optimizing conversions, we recommend that you gradually adjust your budget . On the other hand, if the previously set target CPA is only accessible with high conversion volumes and it is necessary to reduce it; don't decrease it more than 20 % at a time and keep in mind that this could lead to even fewer conversions.

# 2. I have a lot of traffic on my site, but visitors are no longer converting

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Again, it is a sign that users are actually expressing interest but postponing their non-essential purchases until they see the evolution of the situation. If the conversion rate drops by less than 30 % in a few days, we recommend that you let Smart Bidding do it : it will naturally adapt. If, on the other hand, the conversion rate drops dramatically, you can adjust your target CPA or ROAS or temporarily switch your campaigns to Maximize Conversions and regularly adjust budgets based on performance trends more easily of management. In any case, it is important not to overlook this influx of incoming traffic. Pay attention to the quality of the information provided on the homepage (delivery times, returns, etc.) which currently can constitute an obstacle to the purchase. Also think of to keep your communications on social networks or via e-mail to inform your community of the latest news and promotions; be attractive!

# 3. My performance varies enormously, should I go back to the manual?

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Although there is no miraculous recipe, Smart Bidding remains much more efficient and responsive to deal with the upheavals and we do not recommend the manual management of the offers that could further reduce performance . Indeed, Smart Bidding can automatically adapt to fluctuations in search volumes to maximize performance under these conditions. In addition, it will retain key advantages compared to manual management (taking into account real-time signals such as user location, search term and all conversion data. To better define offers and achieve the key performance indicators.). It is important to keep in mind that tCPA / tROAS is a control tool that can be used as manual auctions. The difference is that you have the advantage of discriminating based on the likelihood that the user will convert. Manual management will not necessarily give you more control because of the observation times of changes in the conversion rate and market dynamics that are difficult to predict.

# 4. Should I use the seasonality adjustment feature?

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We do not recommend touching this function because does not respond to the current situation and therefore will not help your performance. Seasonal adjustments are not suitable here because they are used only when large changes in the conversion rate are expected in a very short period (<7 days), such as French days, Black Friday, Flash sales, etc. In the present case, this is not a sudden change after which there would be a return to normal: the evolution of conversion rates is impossible to predict and the trend will be widespread over time. Instead, simply adjust your tCPA / tROAS .

# 5. My flagship product category is out of stock or I can no longer deliver it

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With the lack of labor in the warehouses and logistical problems especially for transport freight trucks, many of our e-merchants are currently in this case. We advise you not to cut all the campaigns first and to keep the activity on the main catalog . However, you can only cut specific campaigns associated with this category of products . The other option is to keep them, but to edit the messages on the landing page if the product is out of stock, for example "place the product on my wish list and receive a notification of its being made available ". In particular, this may give you better visibility on the request during your future orders once you return to normal.

# 6. We have decided to close our e-commerce site

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We advise you to make this decision with the maximum precaution because in time containment, digital and navigation are obviously on the rise. The rise or fall of Impact Stage on your business (seen above) is definitely taking place here, so we recommend that you stay at least present on some key questions such as trademark queries because people will keep looking for you. As explained in point 5, you can cut product campaigns if you have nothing to sell at the moment or continue with an "add to my wish list" option and all the information on why you are not currently submitting to the site . Don't hesitate to think of other ways to engage your community in the meantime (YouTube channels, newsletters, social media, etc.).

# 7. How can we show our added value during this period of work at home?

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In our latest infographic we indicated that 43% of consumers expect brands to continue communicating as always, as long as the ads are pragmatic, realistic and help consumers in their new and limited daily lives. The words taken today will be decisive in the image that the French will keep with you later. In addition, several options are available: for example at the product range level, do not hesitate to to push products related to work from home and to adapt the objectives and budgets for the dedicated campaigns ( la home page of La Redoute is an excellent example). Also remember to update the terms of your ads and extensions in this direction. Beyond the products, it is really in the logistics part that everything is done today. Free delivery with or without minimum purchase, increase in return times: highlight these elements of reassurance in your ads. You can also enable remarketing for users who have visited your website in the past 7 days and offer them free shipping or take advantage of coupon codes on Search and Ads. Shopping to attract your audience. Finally, if possible, try to find alternative delivery options (grocery stores, tobacco press, etc.) which can be a real advantage in this complicated consumer climate.

# 8. I want to recover when the crisis is over

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This is obviously the main goal for everyone, regardless of the level of impact on your business and you will need to prepare a solid restart plan taking into consideration different scenarios (don't hesitate to start the discussion now with your account managers). For example for retail: provide an omnichannel action plan to drive traffic to stores when they reopen. You can also plan to to take advantage of unconverted users during COVID-19 to proactively return when your business restarts through levers such as Discovery, Display, YouTube or Social Media. If you want to go back quickly, we also advise you not to delete the ads, but rather to pause them otherwise you will have to repeat the approval times.

# 9. I want to explore other opportunities besides research

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With specific consumption habits for containment, it is really interesting to review your global strategy and diversify your levers to go to find the traffic it is in . For example with the Display which normally shows an exposure of 95 % while a user is browsing and offering very low click costs. Good visibility at a click, in front of Internet users who increase the time spent on the search network. As for entertainment, there is obviously an opportunity to get started on YouTube . With competitive prices is a key means of conveying messages during containment and maintaining contact with its target. You will be able to rely on performance formats (YouTube for Action), Reach formats, but also on tools such as the beta version of Video Builder, which allows you to create video creations for free and quickly. Finally, confinement also immerses our need for a social link with growing communications from social networks and opportunities that must therefore be seized in the section Social Ads .

# 10 How can I predict what will happen in the search?

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To get an idea of ​​what could happen on research, it might be interesting to see how research has evolved since the beginning of the crisis on other markets . For example, you can see the trends of its sector in Italy through Google Trends . It is also important to observe the evolution of impressions and the impression rate : this will give you an idea of ​​the evolution of the volume of requests . Finally, we advise you in all cases to maintain automation as it will help you be flexible and responsive to deal with unexpected developments.

If you have any questions about your SEA strategy or would like to be supported in your web marketing strategy, do not hesitate to contact our Google Ads consultants through our contact form.

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