Rio SEO Publishes Original Research Revealing COVID-19’s Impact On the Local Search Landscape for Multi-Location Brands

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Rio SEO’s New Whitepaper Analyzes Google My Business Search, Views, and Conversion Trends By Vertical for 200,000+ Enterprise Brand Locations Globally

Rio SEO's New Original Map Pack Research
“The COVID-19 pandemic undoubtedly caused massive disruptions to our global economy, and no industry was unaffected. This was reflected in consumer behavior as discretionary shopping lessened and in-person services were often avoided,” said Mick Wilson, Vice President of Client Success at Rio SEO

Rio SEO, the leading local marketing platform provider for enterprise brands, agencies and retailers, has published original research which details the impact of COVID-19 on the local search landscape for multi-location brands.

The study primarily focuses on Google My Business (GMB) metrics, such as search, views and conversions from the period of January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020. The industries looked at in this whitepaper include: business services, financial services, hospitality, healthcare, retail, and restaurants. The data, drawn from a sample of more than 200,000 international business locations, revealed key insights into consumer search behavior and actions taken across the aforementioned verticals.

Some of the key highlights and takeaways from Rio SEO’s “COVID-19’s Impact on the Local Search Landscape” whitepaper include:

  • All verticals experienced a substantial dip in total views of their GMB listings at the start of the pandemic. While all metrics saw declines, the greatest decline was in total views, which dropped 40% overall in March when compared to the month prior.
  • As the pandemic wore on and even routine outings became fraught with questions about store closures and safety measures, consumers’ informational needs grew. This was reflected in relatively high total click actions from May 2020 onward.
  • Without question, sit-down restaurants were among those hardest hit by the fallout from COVID-19. Overall, they saw a 53% decrease in total views of their listings and a 21% decrease in total searches.
  • Overall, retailers showed the most consistent performance in 2020, with limited drops and gains in many metrics. In fact they saw an overall 117% increase in clicks to their websites.
  • The healthcare industry, unsurprisingly, had one of its strongest years in terms of local marketing metrics. Overall, the healthcare industry saw a 19% increase in total clicks on their listings, a 48% increase in clicks to phone calls, and a 39% increase in clicks to their websites.

The report serves as a resource for multi-location brands to benchmark and review how their local marketing metrics aligned with others in their vertical amid a challenging year for most industries. Additionally, businesses can gain more understanding of what to expect as the pandemic continues to affect the local search landscape globally.

*Rio SEO analyzed data from 400 global enterprise organizations with more than 200,000+ business locations. Our methodology calculates monthly percentage changes by comparing consumer search and conversion volume within a specific industry, month over month from January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020.

For more insights and to dive deeper into Rio SEO’s findings, click here to read the full whitepaper.

About Rio SEO

Rio SEO is the leading local marketing platform for enterprise brands, agencies and retailers. Rio SEO’s Open Local Platform provides multi-location organizations with a comprehensive, seamlessly integrated suite of turnkey local marketing solutions and reputation management tools – Local Listings, Local Pages, Local Reviews, Local Ratings, Local Reporting, and Local Manager – proven to increase brand visibility across search engines, social networks, maps applications and more.

Founded in 2006, Rio SEO ranks among the largest global providers of local search automation solutions and patented SEO reporting tools, driving business from search to sale for corporate brands worldwide. Over 150 enterprise brands and retailers rely on the innovative technology and Rio SEO’s local marketing expertise to drive motivated, measurable online traffic to its local websites and into physical stores. Rio SEO currently serves Fortune 500 companies across a variety of industries including retail, finance, insurance, hospitality and more. For more information, visit rioseo.com or follow @rio_SEO on Twitter.

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Chelsea Alves
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