It’s 14th of March 2020 as I’m writing this, and the rest of the year is filled with uncertainty for most countries in the world.
Healthcare systems might collapse, people work from home instead of going to work, and whole cities and neighborhoods are isolated in certain countries. Also, Half of the world takes this as the end of the world, while the rest of the people think the media is making too big of a deal for a flu.
As Mark Manson said in his Coronavirus risks and biases article, the truth is somewhere in the middle. By the way, that’s the best article I’ve seen so far on the topic so I highly encourage you to check it out.
Europe is quite affected and in panic right now. My home country, Bulgaria, declared an emergency state. Everything is closed except for supermarkets and pharmacies. People coming from another country (or flying back home from anywhere) need to stay at home for 14 days to see if they have any symptoms. If that rule is not followed, they might be facing some serious consequences such as fees and jail time. And all that in a country with less than 40 confirmed cases of Coronavirus.
Other countries (without many cases either) like Czech Republic and Turkey, canceled all flights from nearly 10-20 countries hit by the virus.
The Netherlands, where I live, hasn’t taken such measures yet (although the confirmed cases are 800) and that shows they have more trust that the healthcare system can handle more. But that’s another topic.
The point is that most people aren’t going to work or are now working from home instead. That changes the global economy (and is a positive thing for the environment, for once) and also brings some new things to talk about, such as how to spend all that free time we have, and how online business is affected.
I think it’s quite a good time to start a blog or try any other side hustle from home. People who haven’t yet done that use all kinds of excuses such as not having enough time. Well, being under quarantine gives you the chance to try.
Here’s a list of 67 side hustle ideas if you’re looking for inspiration.
Now, the reason why I wrote this post is to talk about how Coronavirus affects bloggers and what we can do to not just prevent blog traffic from decreasing, but actually keep it stable and even boost it.
How Coronavirus Affects Bloggers
More people are at home now and spend time in front of their computers. In addition, they have more free time and the desire to educate themselves more than usual (be it with news or articles on other topics or taking an online course).
That’s good for bloggers. But why are so many of them seeing a dip in traffic?
The reason is most probably their niche and the exact topics they are covering.
I like what Chelsea from HerPaperRoute (here’s my interview with her) says in her latest post:
“Anything that relates to the current coronavirus pandemic could boost your blog traffic right now.
If you have a travel blog, you may have noticed significant dips in traffic. People aren’t searching for weekend getaways, beach vacations or destination weddings right now.
But they are searching for travel. Just from a different angle.
Types of articles to write:
- Flight cancelations
- Hotel / Expedia / ect refund policies
- What to pack in your carryon to avoid catching the coronavirus on a plane
- Tips for ‘luxury’ staycations at home
People are searching for news articles more than ever. They want the latest coronavirus news and they want to know how to protect themselves.
Remember, no matter what your niche is, your audience is people.
So, serve the people and provide resources and tips for coronavirus prevention however you can. If you do that, it will boost your traffic.”
The Niches That Do Best
Work from home and make money online blogs will continue to do well. Of course, so will the established Health blogs who keep their readers updated on how to stay safe during the Coronavirus pandemic.
The rest of the bloggers should change their approach to creating content a bit these weeks and months so they can give people what they want.
In terms of earning from your blog, that traffic is directly related to your ad revenue. So publishing articles on these topics and sharing them on Pinterest, for example, will not only mean providing your audience with relevant content and following trends, but also gaining traffic and keeping your earnings from advertising.
Affiliate marketing revenue can drop or increase depending on the products you’re promoting. Again, if they are in the work from home niche, people might actually buy through your links more than usual.
Your work in this period might make your income stable and it can even boost it. With all that free time, you can take certain steps and invest more in your blog so you can grow it. Here’s how.
How to Grow Traffic During the Coronavirus Pandemic
1. Write about the hot topics.
If you’re already in the niches we talked about, keep doing what you do but make sure you talk about it from an angle that mentions the virus and how to protect ourselves from it or how to deal with the situation in other aspects of life.
If your blog niche is completely different, then now might be the time to enter the ‘work from home’ and ‘make money online’ category. These are great categories that do well on any lifestyle blog (like mine) and you can simply start experimenting now.
Even a few blog posts on topics like ‘how to save money when shopping online’, ‘how to make money blogging’ or ‘how to start a side hustle as a stay at home parent’ might bring you traffic and new readers. This validation will inspire you to research these niches more and create more content.
2. Do SEO right.
So many bloggers haven’t taken the time to fully optimize their blog or every separate page on their website. That’s because they usually focus on other things or don’t really need to do SEO professionally as they get enough traffic.
But now is a golden opportunity to do it and see results.
Go back to old content and update it all (that’s what I’m doing). Take a course like Stupid Simple SEO (I took it a few months ago and am still implementing strategies from it as some take months) to cover every aspect of search engine optimization for bloggers.
Do keyword research and make sure most of your article are actually optimized for a keyword.
Learn how to use the Google Keyword Planner and Google Search Console (both are free and a must for bloggers) to analyze your website and find opportunities to optimize it.
3. Take an online course.
I’m such a fan of online courses and can’t deny the fact that my blogging business has grown ever since I started taking them.
For example, I only took email marketing seriously (and am now getting 500 new subscribers to my email list monthly) and began selling my online courses the right way (with a sales funnel and automated email series) thanks to what I learned in the course Six-Figure Blogger.
Such information can’t be found with a quick Google search. Also, you need to make sure you trust the creator.
In this case, Six-Figure Blogger is by bloggers I have been following for ages and who’ve proven their expertise. That’s Alex and Lauren from Create and Go. They are six-figure bloggers themselves. Another course of theirs I took is Pinterest Traffic Avalanche.
For beginner bloggers, they also have Launch Your Blog Biz.
And they’ve bundled all these 3 courses to offer them at a reduced price in the Blog Biz Bundle.
Of course, you can take a course on any other topic. But if you’re already a blogger or want to be one, then use this precious period of more free time to invest in your blog. It will pay off tenfold.
So that’s how Coronavirus will affect bloggers in my opinion (and from what I’m seeing around the Web) and what you can do to benefit from it and help raise awareness.