In response to the worldwide business shutdown due to coronavirus outbreak, Google advises companies to avoid disabling their website. Accordingly, it is pertinent to the search result.
John Mueller, Google’s senior webmaster trends analyst, said that taking down a business for a long time might heavily affect the search result on the engine. Thus, he added that this should be a last resort.
“This is an extreme measure that should only be taken for a very short period of time (a few days at most), as it will otherwise have significant effects on the website in Search, even when implemented properly,” he said.
Many companies throughout the globe have been considering and beginning to shutdown their websites. Among the consideration is the need to continuously pay for hosting while their sales are highly declining.
Addressing the concern regarding the website shutdown that might harm search rankings when it will be online once more, Google addresses the issue by giving out some tips. Of those, companies should reduce the website functionality.
Google Solutions to Business and Their Website amid Coronavirus
Considering the situation, Google highly suggests businesses to limit their website functionality during the hard time. This is so that customers can still look up for the companies and the products or services they offer, as well as avoiding problems in search rankings.
“That’s why it’s highly recommended to only limit your site’s functionality instead. Keep in mind that your customers may also want to find information about your products, your services, and your company, even if you’re not selling anything right now,” Mueller said.
Among the attempts to limit functionality, business can mark some features or products to be out of stock. Also, they can put a banner informing about the limitation of some functions.
“You might mark items as out of stock, or restrict the cart and checkout process,” he added. “This is the recommended approach since it minimizes any negative effects on your site’s presence in Search. People can still find your products, read reviews, or add wish list so they can purchase at a later time.”
Google also publishes a set of guidelines and a helpful FAQ to address the concern.
Also Read: Google Cloud Expansion Plan to APAC