There’s no surprise that this is our biggest category of verticals, and what we see here can be further grouped into two main trends – Changing Intent and Industry Collapse.
In cases with changing intent, we see search volumes remain stable or even experience growth while the click-throughs to the websites drop significantly.
This indicates a change in intent, people are still searching, but the nature of their enquiry has changed. Users might be looking for advice, browsing for alternatives or looking up new regulations. Google & Microsoft have both re-leased their findings.
Demonstrating this change in intent perfectly, B2B, while showing a slightly negative Impression trend YoY, shows a significant drop in engagement with Clicks decreasing 34% YoY at the end of March, and CTR dropping 31% YoY. The bump in early March possibly indicating users reacting to stimulus package announcements on the 11th.
Education saw growth stagnate in February, with the YoY growth experienced in late 2019 steadily reducing. The vertical did not experience the typical upward trend toward key intake periods in early months of the year.
As things continue to decrease toward March, we see a large spike in search volume around the 15th as uncertainty grows around the status of educational institutions in the face of term beginning and school closures.
CTR indicates again a change in intent, with the influx of new searches not in line with client offerings, e.g. users searching for advice, government regulation, etc. We then see the all too familiar tail-off toward the end of March, trending down YoY.
Initially showing fluctuating but positive YoY growth, insurance also saw a mid-March crash in CTR resulting in Clicks dropping 19% YoY.
Indications of the impact of new regulations and government funding, as well as a growth, then eventual decline, in search impressions possibly off the back of insurance policies not covering pandemics, and people cancelling or pausing insurance policies for travel.
While YoY Impressions continue positive movement, we see a drop then stagnation toward mid-March in Clicks, with users still browsing but with open houses and auctions cancelled, the market is effectively on hold until restrictions are lifted or alternative processes are established. Window-shopping continues through March while CTR drops.