Supporting Local Businesses
When it comes to combating the coronavirus pandemic, most states and cities are now banning public gatherings and even closing bars and restaurants in an effort to slow down the virus spread. Due to this, small businesses all over the country are struggling to make ends meet. Not only are small business owners concerned about the future of their companies, but also the employees are worried about how they’ll pay bills for the next few weeks. However, while there is not much we can do since the restrictions are already implemented, there’re some few measures we can take to support our favorite local businesses during these hard times.
1. Most Restaurants and Bars are still offering Carry-Out and Delivery Services
Most states are taking precautions by shutting down bars and restaurants. Your local restaurants might have been forced to shut their doors, but most of them still offer delivery or carry-out. Calling for delivery or getting a carry-out order is an excellent option if it exists where you reside. You won’t have to cook, and the restaurant will still be making some money. Not only does that help in keeping the business going, but it also provides income for delivery workers. Services such as DoorDash and Grubhub have sent information to drivers and customers to help ensure safety by suggesting contact-less deliveries. So, check to see if that is a possibility at your local restaurant.
2. Buy Gift Cards from Your Favorite Boutique or Restaurant
After everything gets back to normal, small businesses will be open again. So why not buy a gift card now, that you may use later when life returns to normal? This is a great way to ensure that your favourite store or restaurant is getting some income right now when they need it the most. Buying a gift card is the best way to inject some cash into a local business right now. If you are stuck at home, give your favourite restaurant or local shops a vote of confidence by spending even $25 on a gift card. When you use the gift card later in the future, it will feel like you are having a free dinner.
3. Shop Online
We are all mostly used to shopping online such as on Amazon. So, a great way to support a local business is buying from your smartphone or computer. In addition to their brick-and-mortar locations, many local companies have online stores. However, not all retail stores or boutiques may be offering online shopping. But if they do, it is an excellent way to support a small business while also safeguarding yourself by not moving out of your home. Whenever possible, consider purchasing products from them. The delivery also applies here, so taking caution by avoiding physical contact with the delivery driver. When you become fun of local shopping, keep in mind that buying from someone in your community help them find ways to support their family and daily lives.
4. Buy Local Produce
Most grocery markets and stores are doing an excellent job keeping up with the rising demand. To help support other workers, try grocery shopping at a local market. Farmers markets are well known for providing fresh produce to the community, but they’ll need our support more than ever during these trying times. If they are open, swing by.
5. Consider A Donation
Not everyone can afford to donate during these harsh times. But you may consider a donation to a local business that could need it if your income will not be affected by the coronavirus pandemic. It does not matter if it is cooking a meal for the employees or writing a check, any kind of help could mean a world to someone who is not sure how they’re going to pay their bills the next few weeks.
6. Use Credit or Debit Cards
When you go shopping, instead of cash, use a credit or debit card. Coins and paper money pass through countless hands and carry all types of germs. You can prevent the spread of those germs by limiting the amount of cash you use, which is extremely helpful right now.
7. Stay Home if You’re Sick
If you are sick, don’t put others at risk, which is common sense. If there is something you really need, consider using a delivery service. All local businesses are working towards defeating the virus. The last thing they can wish for their customers or employees is getting sick due to someone going out when they should have stayed at home.
8. Be Patient
In most cases, businesses are working at a dramatically low speed. There is a higher chance that you will encounter out-of-stock items or experience longer waits. Trust me; all businesses are feeling that pressure. They are all looking forward to meeting your needs. When they can’t, show a little patience and grace, keeping in mind that they are working hard to serve their community and stay open.
9. Say Thank You
When you go to your local shop or grocery store, make sure to say thanks or some encouraging words to the employees working hard at the stocking shelves and the payment counter. It can be easy to forget that these employees are risking getting into contact with sick people or even working overtime to ensure the store is clean and full of food and supplies needed by the customers. Just saying thank you can go a long way to spreading goodwill and a little gratitude.
This is something we could all use to encourage each other.
There is a lot of uncertainty when it comes to the COVID-19 outbreak. In the affected regions, most small businesses have been ordered to close. CDC also issued a statement abolishing all gatherings of more than 50 individuals for the next eight weeks. That can be devastating to the people who own or work in small businesses that are now being forced to close their doors. The good news is that we have shown you plenty of things you can do to support them.
How to rank your website in Google without having to spend tons of money
As google keeps updating their algorithms, it gets harder to rank your website in google. You can’t just throw money at your website and expect to rank on Google without knowing what it is you need to rank. However, with a strategy and willingness to spend some time working on it, you can improve the search engine results and can even rank without having to spend money. Keep in mind, though. You’re exchanging money for time. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) doesn’t work overnight. It takes time like fine wine. Here are the 10 most effective ways to rank on Google for free.
1. Aim for “position zero” to rank my website
A lot of searches nowadays have an answer box or featured snippets. The snippet is the content that directly answers the question that the user is searching for, right on the search results. This is an effective way of increasing traffic as the snippet typically links to the website content from which the search engine drew it. The good thing about featured snippets is that you do not have to rank number one for as long as your website is on the first page it can rank in position zero. You can improve the chances of ranking in the snippets by writing authoritative and clear answers that answer the most asked questions in your niche. And if it answers the right question, Google will feature it in rank zero.
- Fix broken links
Backlinks are an important part of improving the trust of your website. But did you know that internal links are also very important? For one they improve the user experience and in doing so they can help you rank higher. Having broken links on your website means that visitors will be getting 404 errors when they click on your links, which is a terrible experience. And, broken links mean that the link juice you get from the back link is not spread around the website efficiently. This means that you will not rank some pages of the website as high as you would like. You can fix broken links by checking for them using Dead Link Checker or Broken Link Check.
3.Get more backlinks
Backlinks are the hyperlinks from other sites to your website. They are a form of a voting system in which the more back links you get, the higher you can rank on the SERPS. This is arguably one of the most important ranking factors in the Google algorithm. The reason for this is that when you get links from other websites, it tells Google that your website has valuable information or is an authority in the niche you are writing about. The more links you can get from authoritative websites, the higher you are likely to rank on Google.
4.Google loves to rank a great looking website
Having a great web design not only improves the user experience but will also make it easier for the search engines to crawl and index your content. Good web design means that you buy a theme or engage professional who will make a website that loads fast, spreads link juice better, has great navigation that allows clients to move through the website easily, and is mobile optimized for clients on small screens. This will get you more mobile visitors, lower bounce rates and consequently more traffic from the search engines.
5.Improve the User Experiencen (UX)
According to a SEMrush study that analyzed ranking factors, the most critical factors that affect how high a website ranks on the SERP (Search Results Page) are bounce rate, pages per session, time on site and website visits. All the four have a direct correlation with the user experience on your website. The relationship is very simple. If your website is enjoyable and easy to use and provides valuable and useful information that users love, you are more likely to get more visitors. If these site visitors stay longer on the site clicking through to different pages as compared to those of the competition, your rank will rank higher.
6.Improve your page speed
Since 2018, Google has been using mobile page speed as a ranking factor. While the search company did say that only a few websites are going to be impacted by the update, it is still critical to ensure your site is compliant. The reason for this is not only to improve the user experience but also your ranking on the search engines. When you have a fast loading website, visitors are more likely to stay longer on the site browsing more pages. This sends a signal to Google that you have a valuable website, which could increase your ranks.
7.Optimize for local search to rank your website
Optimizing for local search is one of the best ways of getting more traffic to your website particularly for service business. More people are looking for businesses near where they are and you stand a better chance of ranking higher if you are optimized for local search. Some techniques for ranking higher on local searches include optimizing for “near me” searches, getting your clients to write reviews of your business online, claiming Google My Business listings, and getting the business listed on local directories will get your website to show up in local SERPS.
8.Optimize for voice search
A lot of leading tech sites found that by 2020, half of all online searches online will be by voice. This means that there is a huge opportunity to get ahead of the curve and take advantage of this opportunity as more people start searching using voice. You can incorporate likely voice searches in your niche by writing content in a natural conversational style and capture that traffic for more revenue.
9.Optimize your images
Non optimized images tend to slow down your website, which makes for bad user experience. Non optimized images without alt tags and descriptions also make it harder for Google to identify and understand what they are about. You can rank better by compressing your images which will make your website load faster for site visitors and also easier for the Google bot to crawl. Optimizing descriptions for filenames and alt tags will also make it easier for Google to understand what your content is about, which could improve your ranking on the SERP.
10.Use H1 and H2 header tags
Headers not only make your content easier and more readable for human visitors but also for the search engines. As such, you need to include H1 and H2 header tags that give a strong indication to Google about what your content is about. For the visitors, the header tags are an effective way of organizing your content to emphasize your content, which makes for good user experience. This will ultimately make the search engines see your website as a valuable resource, which will increase the chances of your website ranking higher.
11.Write SEO Optimized Content
Having great content on your website that is optimized for SEO is one of the most effective ways to rank higher and improve traffic numbers to your website. In fact, a recent survey of SEOs and digital marketing practitioners had 57% of the participants saying that on page content development is one of their most effective tactics for ranking. To optimize content, you need to optimize it for mobile, ensure that it targets certain keywords common to the topic or niche, it is written to help solve the particular needs of the audience reading it, and has links to helpful and authoritative internal and external content.
You do not have to spend tons of money to rank higher on the search engines. With a few onsite tweaks and optimizations, you can significantly improve the value of your website and Google rankings. Implement a few of the suggested optimizations at a time and you should start seeing improvement in your search engine rankings within a few weeks.