Worldwide interest in business loans continues to rise dramatically on a search engine Google. Data gathered by Learnbonds.com indicates that between the first week of April last year and a similar period in 2020, the queries have gone up by 317%.
Notably, the searches remained largely constant for most months, but a significant spike was witnessed during the second week of March 2020. During this period, the Coronavirus pandemic had begun taking a toll on many businesses across the globe. Back the popularity score for the subject was 30.
In the third week of March, the popularity score significantly jumped to 57, a rise of about 90%. The following week, the searches grew in popularity by 56% with a score of 89. By the first week of April 2020, the searches had achieved the peak popularity of 100, a growth of about 12% from the previous week and 317% growth from a year ago. A year ago, the popularity score stood at 24. Before the March 2020 spike, the popularity score had a weekly average of 25.
Google trends platform analyzes the popularity of top search queries in Google Search based on region and language. The searches are categorized based on the popularity rate. A value of 100 is the peak popularity while a score of 50 means that the term is half as popular. On the other hand, a score of 0 means the subject is not popular.
Jamaicans most interested in business loans
An overview of the data further shows that Jamaican residents are the most interested in business loans. Over the last 12 months, the Caribbean country has achieved the peak popularity of 100 followed by South Africa which has a popularity score of 59. Nigeria comes third with a score of 56 closely followed by Australia at 54. Asia closes the top five groups with a popularity score of 49.
On the other hand, India occupies the sixth spot with a score of 47 followed by New Zealand. Both the United Kingdom and Pakistan resident volume for business loans search tied at 42. The United States occupies the tenth slot with a popularity score of 40.
In all the countries highlighted, the topic of business loans followed the same trend as the phrase became popular globally.
Generally, business loans are specifically intended for business purposes. Just like other loans, it entails the creation of a debt, which will be repaid with added interest. Furthermore, business loans include bank loans, mezzanine financing, asset-based financing, invoice financing, microloans, business cash advances, and cash flow loans.
Business loans often range from one to five years, however, based on certain circumstances they can be extended. For this type of loan, the interest rates range from 2% to 8%, depending on the lender’s requirements and the borrower’s creditworthiness.
COVID-19 impact on businesses
Most businesses usually seek loans in circumstances when they don’t have enough liquid reserves to sustain expenses for the short term period. The loans are meant for emergencies just like the COVID-19 pandemic. The impact of COVID-19 is expected to be material across all sectors. However, businesses in accommodation and food, leisure and transport services expected to be the most hit.
With the global economy feeling the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic, small businesses have been the most affected. Businesses are looking for ways to keep them afloat during the current crisis. Most of the small business loans are meant to go into paying employees rent, utilities, and mortgage.
As a result, some governments have come out to enact laws approving the rolling out of COVID-19 relief packages that entail business loans. For example, in the United State, enacted the Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES) Act which includes a $349 billion stimulus package to help small businesses make their payroll and rent payments over the next few months until the uncertainty around the pandemic is over.
This stimulus program, called the Payroll Protection Program (PPP), is meant to help small businesses avoid laying off employees over the next few months while social distancing directives mean that many small businesses are closed or operating at less than full capacity.
As of April 2nd, over 900,000 had been infected with the virus which has led to the death of at least 47,000 people globally.