The term COVID-19 is not just the short form of ‘CoronaVirus Disease- 2019’ but a global crisis of the kind that was never seen before by humanity. The World Health Organisation (WHO) declared it a pandemic on March 11, 2020. And after that, almost every industry and company started to take safety measures to keep people connected yet safe.
In the league of giant companies, Google is a reputed name and they also released a significant range of updates to tackle COVID-19 aka Coronavirus pandemic. Google started to pay more attention to the news, trends, and videos related to COVID-19 and have started to remove videos broadcasting wrong information, also providing free access to the premium features of its video conferencing app ‘Meet’.
Many such improvisations have been done by Google in recent times. Let’s have a thorough look at such measures that Google has taken to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic.
Significant Changes in Google as a search engine
Modified or limited some of the features of Google My Business: In March, 2020 Google notified the Google Business Page owners to update their profile according to real-time changes in their business due to the COVID-19 so that customers can get the precise information. They suggested updating the business hours, contact details, and other corresponding changes in their business. Meanwhile, they disabled new reviews, review replies and new Q&A for GMB pages.
Monitoring and Removal of False Information: Rumours spread faster than a fire during crisis time and being one of the leading sources of information to the world, it was essential for Google to take the required steps to prevent wrong and misleading information from spreading. Thus, Google has started removing false pieces of information from Youtube, Google Maps and Play Store.
Till now, thousands of videos have been removed from Youtube which was spreading misinformation or unverified news regarding Coronavirus. Similarly, Google is promptly removing fake reviews and wrong information about healthcare entities present on their map.
Dynamic Updates on Closure through Maps in Google Search: Many countries are announcing or modifying lockdown related parameters frequently. Many local businesses have been kept close by the owner to follow the lockdown measures and subsequently, Google is also showing those local businesses as temporarily closed, except if they are related to essential services such as medical and grocery.
Google has not only given the authority to GMB page owners to do ‘temporarily closed’ announcements through their accounts but also contacting local businesses through AI Duplex technology to confirm their modified business hours to update on Google Search and Maps.
Raising Awareness for Safety from Coronavirus: Google is trying to raise awareness among common people for safety Coronavirus. Regularly Google displays relevant and dedicated doodles or suggests some online sources regarding COVID-19 to educate the users for prevention of the spread of COVID-19. Google is ensuring that its users must know the importance of regular hand-wash, social-distancing and sanitization and other such safety parameters during this pandemic. Google has said that it would keep updating additional pieces of information regularly.
Effects on Google Ads: Google has informed the customer support for Google ads may be delayed or become unavailable for a while. Also, Google has temporarily banned ads related to respirators and masks to prevent such elements who may capitalize on such tragedy for making profits. Google finds it sensitive to run such advertisements that are made for gaining profits from tragic events such as death, conflicts or natural disaster.
Google Meet made available for everyone: Video Conferencing App Google Meet has been made available for every Gmail user for a limited time without any charges. Since a huge fraction of private industry employees, especially from IT and ITes industry have been asked to Work from Home or work remotely and in such conditions, Google Meet is proving to be very helpful to communicate and coordinate with colleagues and management.
Webmaster Conference postponed: Google has postponed all global Webmaster Conferences due to COVID-19. Google is strictly following guidelines and safety measures suggested by the WHO, the CDC and other relevant organisations and to adhere to those measures, any conference is better to be postponed for the time being.
Distance Learning resources launched: Recently Google has launched several new distance learning resources such as YouTube Learning Hub, Webinars, Training Materials, Blog Posts to help educators worldwide. Google has also announced that they would be launching a Distance Learning Fund to financially empower the learning processes worldwide.
Google is counted among the topmost companies in the whole world and as per their reputation, they are doing lots of things to help you amid COVID-19 pandemic. Follow the guidelines and safety measures suggested by esteemed and reliable global organisations and keep yourself safe from Coronavirus. Stay at home, avoid going out without a mask. Only go outside if it is essential and must follow social-distancing norms.
Stay at home to make your present safe and to prepare for a better future. As soon as the market is going to reopen, businesses will start to come back on track but till that time make your business strong through digital resources and get ahead in the race from your competitors. Consult digital marketing experts at Webpulse Solution Pvt Ltd, the leading Digital Marketing Agency in Delhi for best bits of advice in that regard.