Digital Resources Provide Lifelines for Small Businesses

Coronavirus has the world in a frenzy right now, and if you are a small business owner, you are likely chomping at the bit to get back to work, as your blood pressure escalates while waiting for states to reopen and life to return to a new normal.

Fortunately, technology has evolved so significantly over the last three decades, small business owners have several digital lifelines at their disposal to help keep their brands visible before, during, and after states reopen their economies in the wake of COVID-19.

The most important digital lifeline available to boost business brand visibility is that of a high-quality, functional, user-friendly website.

Website Development and Updates

For those of us immersed in the digital age, websites are a magnificent, modern marketing resource for businesses and consumers, because they provide insight into the jest of what companies have to offer. Best practices in website design can result in an attractive, functional site that can quickly convert visitors to new clients.

If your small business is behind the times, and you have not invested in a website; or your current website is “tired” and outdated, there is no better time than now to take the plunge!

With no clear indication of when stay-at-home orders will be lifted and businesses will safely open again, an online presence is the very best way to reach customers and potential customers over the long-term.

If you do have a website, you might consider updating the content and images for a fresh look and a more inviting feel. Also, if your business is taking extra safety measures during this coronavirus outbreak, and the products and services you offer are available remotely, consider adding a banner message to inform your website visitors of the safety measures your business is adapting as a means of outreach and reassurance.

Google My Business

Unless you are a healthcare worker, a first responder, a law enforcement officer or an essential business, you are likely a segment of the majority staying healthy at home and going online to find many of the products and services needed. The most common way consumers find products and services in their area is through search engines, like Google, which is, by far, the most popular globally.

You want people to find your small business when they go in search of products and services you offer, and a great way to make that happen is through Google My Business™ [GMB]. If you have not heard of this, it’s high time you did!

This powerful tool serves as a directory of local businesses that get discovered more easily, like yours, and it increases the likelihood your business will escalate in Google search rankings, providing more brand visibility, as well as more traffic to your website and your physical location. GMB combines helpful information, like location, keywords and phrases, Google reviews  and more, so more people find your business.

Higher visibility in search rankings is the goal, but there’s even more that GMB provides small business owners. You can “hangout” with your customers and stay connected. Furthermore, this tool provides Google Analytics,  so you can track traffic to your website and so much more.

Optimize your GMB with pertinent information containing keywords, and a laser-focus on Search Engine Optimization [SEO], and watch as your business steps-up in rankings and is found by more current and future customers.

Search Engine Optimization

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and when done properly, it is a crucial element in organically boosting your business’ position and rank in Google and other search engines. Basic online inquiries conducted by curious minds in search of information, always start with a search engine, and, as previously stated, Google is the most popular around the world.

People type what they’re looking for using specific keywords and locations, and like magic, a list appears with a host of highly-ranked options from which to choose.

Google is, essentially, the master controller for who finds your business, and SEO drives the way Google algorithms find and rank you in searches based on links, locations, keywords and keyword phrases. “Crawlers” within the Google network are constantly searching for links and websites.

“For Google to know of the existence of your site, there first has to be a link from another site – one that is already in the index – to your site. If crawlers follow that link, it will lead to the first crawler-session and the first time your site is saved in the index. From then on, your website could appear in Google’s search results, Google’s secret algorithm,” according to the SEO experts at Yoast.

Appeasing the Google gods and their algorithms can be tricky, because they are always changing. It is important to effectively apply best practices in SEO services, and utilize the powerful tools they provide, like Google My Business.

Retail eCommerce

Small retail businesses are some of the hardest hit during this coronavirus outbreak, so it’s important to explore options like ecommerce, or an online store, to maintain or sustain a revenue source when customers can’t walk through your door.

Increased revenue is one of the main reasons retail shops develop an ecommerce strategy. However, there are numerous benefits to this website resource.

An online store reaches beyond the confines of your physical location, although, you may choose to manage your ecommerce there.  Since retail is considered non-essential during the current pandemic, and people can’t come to your business for products, you can deliver products to your customers via ecommerce!

The majority of America is home in front of a computer or device every day, so small retail business owners can maximize their online exposure using ecommerce for a minimal expense. Moreover, an online shop is available 24/7/365, where a physical location generally maintains set hours. This means you are open for business and your products are available to customers and potential customers, even when your physical location is closed.

Additionally, small businesses can improve their brand awareness and online marketing reputation with positive reviews about consumers’ shopping experiences, which is always a positive! Encourage your satisfied customers to write a Google Review and/or a Facebook review, if you have a Facebook page.

KallistoArt is your online marketing company providing expert website and ecommerce development, SEO, and Google My Business services to help small businesses during this most challenging time in our country’s history and beyond. More than anything, we want small businesses to survive and succeed this historic recession, and we are prepared to do our part to help.

Contact KallistoArt today to maximize your small business’ exposure in search engines, traffic to your website on desktop and mobile devices, and engagement with customers and potential customers now and in the future. 813.563.5321

Sources:

Google My Business™

Google Search

Yoast