Are you temporarily shut down due to COVID-19 - use this time wisely and build yourself a better website and start promoting.
Here's a thought for all of the struggling business owners affected by Coronavirus: use these few weeks (months?) to build your business a better website without hiring someone. How? you may be asking.
Here's a quick guide from someone who has made a living off of this for 3 years:
Go to GeekZoneHosting.Com. and choose Weebly Hosting. From my experience, this is probably the easiest website builder on there. After purchasing your domain name the pricing starts at FREE for a 1 year hosting trial and converting to a paid plan is easy to expand to if you want to increase the number of pages you can add. If you don't already have a web site up and running this is the quickest way to get one going and get your domain name established.
Pick a template that matches your business. Weebly will literally present you with, more or less, a finished site. Domain (URL), email address, etc.... included.
YouTube how to use Weebly. Even for those of you who aren't web savvy, it won't take more than a day to learn the basics. There's no code, all drag and drop.
Plug and chug. Do what you need to do to make the site your own. My recommendation is find 2-3 websites that resemble your business and look good. Then copy their format as best as you can. You might get 80% there, that's fine. It doesn't have to be perfect and you can always tweak it later. Just be authentic in your writing and, above all, put yourself in the shoes of your customers. If they're going to your site, what exactly would they be looking for? Is that thing easy to find? Most people go to websites to get menu, pricing, or contact/location. Make sure those are all very accessible from every page.
Use good imagery.But I don't have any! That's fine. Go to Unsplash.com or Pexels.com and download whichever photos/videos you want, they're all free and okay for commercial use. Make sure you run any image you use for the website through TinyJPG.com. This will make your website faster. If you need to mix your own videos once you have found the media you want to use then you can use WeVideo.Com
Dot the i's and launch. Weebly gives you everything you need to do to launch and get your SEO up to par. Again, doesn't need to be perfect, but if you get this stuff plugged in now, it'll put you at an SEO advantage in 6-12 months when things calm down.
Get the other stuff covered. Get your business on Google, Instagram, Pinterest, DoorDash, SendFox, Yelp, etc. Lay the foundation while you're sitting around stressing out. Be proactive.
Start marketing. No, not the paid stuff. Just start posting on local Facebook groups encouraging people to order from you or come back after it's safe. Start offering gift cards at a discount to be used after things wind down (up?). Start creating promotional pieces for upcoming holidays. Use canva.com if you don't know design tools. This is a great design idea site that you can create assets for use on your site and for your printed marketing also.
Need a second opinion on whether your site is good enough as is? Just post the URL in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll happily run through your current site and give honest feedback.
I know this time is tough for a lot of people, so hang in there. Learning new skills is fulfilling and may just get some of you through this.
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