Is demand returning to the care market? A chat with Care Sourcer SEO Director Sam Auchterlonie

This week, we spoke with Care Sourcer SEO Director Sam Auchterlone about demand for care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Sam has 12 years of experience in SEO, including 8 years at Skyscanner during a period of extreme growth.

Is demand returning to normal? What is the new normal in care? What can you do to set your business up for success in the coming months? Find out below.

Sam Auchterlonie

SEO Director, Care Sourcer

First things first, is demand returning to the care market?

Yes and no. The number of searches for care home-related keywords has returned to the level we’d expect at this time of year. However, we’re seeing the volume of care enquiries remain lower than expected.

COVID-19 has made an already complex decision-making process even more complicated for care seekers. There is still a high level of concern from family members about the safety of loved ones in a care environment.

How do you see care search volume trending in the coming months?

I expect search volume for informational topics such as ‘choosing a care home’ and ‘moving into a care home’ to continue to grow. People are looking for more reassurance that they’re making the right decision.

With this increased level of concern, it’s likely the decision-making process will take longer for most care seekers.

With that in mind, what can care providers do to set themselves up for success in the coming weeks and months?

Recent press has resulted in lower trust in the care industry. Your primary focus should be rebuilding that trust. Here’s just a few ways you can do that:

Make a good first impression

79% of consumers say they search online before booking a visit with a nursing home, 100% said they booked a visit over the phone. Make sure your care home is easy to call, all staff are trained in telephone customer service, and the telephone is answered quickly.

Tip: Use direct phone numbers (rather than a main switchboard number) to allow care seekers to contact the home they would like to speak to easily. Find out how this helps in our Care home marketing trends for 2020.

Answer questions before they’re asked

Care seekers are going to have more questions than normal. You can build trust and save time by answering these questions on your website. For you this means more relevant calls from more informed seekers!

Tip: When a care seeker asks you a question over the phone, note it down. When you see a question repeating, you know you should answer it online. Care Sourcer’s COVID-19 and availability features help to do this! Find out more >

Keep up to date

The online world changes regularly, so it’s important to keep up to date with how people are searching for care and what they are asking. Here are some free tools you use to help you understand what care seekers are doing online:

Google Trends – Understand the number of search for certain keywords/themes and how they compare over time.

Keyword Generator – Find new keyword ideas and understand how people are searching for care.

Google Search Console – Explore errors Google has found on your website and what keywords people are using to find you.

Google – Search for a relevant phrases on Google and use the “people also ask” and the “searches related to” sections to identify questions users ask.

It appears that the volume of searches for care is returning to normal, however enquiries remain low. You can set up your business for success when demand returns by getting ahead of the curve and providing an excellent service to people searching for care now.

Know of any other issues you’d like to see our team discuss? Reach out to to suggest a topic.

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