The Covid-19 crisis has now reached a new critical phase where public health systems are acting determinedly to fight against the global pandemic. Obviously, the main emphasis is and should be on containing and mitigating the disease itself. But the economic impacts are also noteworthy, and many companies are feeling their way towards understanding, reacting to, and learning lessons from rapidly unfolding events. Unforeseen twists and turns will be discovered with each news cycle, and we will only have a complete picture in retrospect.
The COVID-19 crisis has left the global economy in a difficult place, with brick-and-mortar small businesses across industries feeling this burden especially. Now more than ever, businesses need to stay connected to their customers and sustain their business, even if their doors are closed. As businesses have been forced to close their physical locations due to social distancing guidelines, having a professional and reliable website and web hosting services has become more important than ever.It is also mandatory for you to have a professional web hosting. The right web hosting services can play a great role in the growth of the company. It helps business sites in getting incredible results.
Making sure your website performs best will help you adapt quickly to these new circumstances so you can continue bringing in revenue. A professional web hosting company will help reassure your loyal customers that you’re still here for them.
In this post, we’ll discuss why you might want to take a close look at the advantages of reliable web hosting services and how you can build a strong online presence. Let’s dive in!
Why Your Business Site May Need an Update during COVID-19 Pandemic
In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 countries around the world are encouraging people to stay home as much as possible. Many non-essential businesses have been forced to temporarily close their operations. Since consumersare unable to shop in person, many of them are now going online for their favorite products.
If your business is the one that is currently closed or receiving very few customers, having an updated site is key to reaching your loyal shoppers. However, for business owners focusing mostly on in-person interactions, your site may be lacking features for web-based operations.
Besides, a sudden increase in visitors could lead to performance issues or even crash your website’s server. Carrying out a COVID-19 audit and utilizing the services of a professional web hosting provider can help you avoid these situations and keep serving your customers even while your brick-and-mortar location is temporarily shuttered.
Here are Some Advantages of Choosing a Professional Web Hosting Company for Your Site
It is quite challenging for you to choose the best web hosting service provider as there are plenty of them in the market. Of course, you can select some underperformed affordable services from a renowned hosting service provider but it is just like trying to swim in an empty pool.
You can certainly save some bucks on these types of hosting but it is not worth investing as it might affect the performance of your site.Hencechoosing professional web hosting is a much better option for your business needs.
2. Technical Support
Technical customer support is an essential aspect of your website that you should not ignore. Evenminor technical glitches can shut down your site for a longer period due to a lack of proper customer support to fix up the problem.
You might lose a large number of traffic that might result in revenue loss. On the other hand, with professional hosting, you can get round the clock support by the professionals who will address your issues quickly and ensure you get maximum uptime.
3. Data Management
A professional web hosting company offers you complete control over content management. You can post articles, blogs, and images as per your choice and decide how they will appear. There are also no boundarieson the number of ads to post. Also, you need not worry about the amount of data as you can add any number of pages to your site.
4. Unlimited Space
With professional web hosting services, you get the option to choose any amount of disk space as per your need,and also you can upgrade or downgrade the same according to the level of scalability of your business. It also helps in getting moderate growth in site traffic that positively affects your business.
5. Email and Domain
To build brand loyalty, every hosting company provides at least one domain name to the clients. In professional web hosting, you will not face these types of issues and you can pick your email accounts as well as domain according to your needs.
6. Design and Style
A professionally hosted site allows you to get unrestricted access for designing the site and its related technologies. This lets you have the design and infrastructure creativity. This also helps you experiment with the different design layouts before finalizing the one best suited for your site.
7. SEO Opportunities
Unreliable hosting services do not provide you with many opportunities related to SEO that makes it challengingfor businesses to rank their sites on the top of web results on search engines. When you acquirethe services of a professional company, you get almost complete control over the SEO practices.You can easily create content as per your choice and optimize SEO processes for a longer duration.
8. More Security
By using professional hosting services, you can enjoy stronger security privileges with the help of advanced tools and the availability of professional engineers who are responsible for the security concerns.
Some of the significant security measures used by professional web services include virus scanning, security audits, spam filtering, and OS updates. Furthermore, these can fix all the security-related loopholes and prevent your server from external attacks.
9. Data Recovery
This is one of the best benefits of hiring a professional web hosting service. It is always important for you to keep your data safe with regular backups and up to dated ones because losing your data means it losing your reputation.
Professional web hosting always makes sure that your data is properly backed up and can be retrieved whenever the need be.
10. Save Your Money and Time
For business people, it is crucial to saving time and money. With professional web hosting services, you have the opportunity to save time and money by availing the services of experts who will be responsible for managing your servers while you can easily focus on your business growth.
How to Revamp Your Business Website for COVID-19 (5 Key Tips)
Apart from utilizing the services of a professional web hosting company your business website could probably need a little renovation. Here are 5 tips to help you ensure your online presence appears professional and reliable.
1. Optimize Your Site’s Speed
Loading time can be a serious pain point. If your website is slow, your visitors may become frustrated and leave rather than wait around.
Even if you have optimized your website’s loading times beforehand, performance decreases over time and requires regular maintenance. For this reason, it’s smart to check your site’s current loading times using a platform such as Pingdom Tools or Google PageSpeed Insights:
This will give you an idea of where your site currently stands, as well as suggestions on specific areas for improvement. Some common strategies for improving your loading times include:
- Optimizing your images for the web
- Implementing browser caching
- Using a Content Delivery Network (CDN) for instance Cloudflare
Your hosting plan can also impact your website’s performance, as we will discuss momentarily.
2. Assess Your Hosting Plan and Consider Upgrading
Many small businesses are able to host their sites just fine on inexpensive shared servers. However, as we mentioned earlier, a sudden traffic spike could crash your server if it’s not set up to handle a large volume of visitors. Luckily, there are warning signs that can specify that your hosting plan is due for an upgrade before you reach this point:
- Slow loading times that aren’t resolved after you carry out other speed optimization strategies
- A significant increase in website traffic according to Google Analytics or other data you’ve collected
If your website is on a shared hosting plan, you might want to consider moving Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting or dedicated server hosting.
3. Improve Your Site’s SEO
Search engines are likely to be the primary way your customers find your website. When they search your business’s name on google, you want to make sure your website is the first result they see.
This requires some work in the form of SEO. Many techniques go into optimizing your site for search engines, but some of the most common include:
- Incorporating keywords on your website, such as your business’ name and location
- Using SEO-friendly title of the web pages that clearly describe what your pages are about
- Writing meta descriptions for your content so users can see a short explanation of your page in Google
- Adding alt text to your images so search engines can index them properly
- Creating external and internal links throughout your site to help visitors navigate it
For small businesses, local SEO is also a smart strategy. If your website is built on WordPress, there are numerous plugins that you may want to look into the suggestions on how to improve your content, too.
4. Update Content for Accuracy and Relevancy
Beyond the more technical updates your website mightneed, it is also important to go through your webpages and make sure they are still accurate and relevant to your business and customers. Some examples of how this might play out include:
- Changing your business hours to reflect new COVID-19 operations timing
- Checking your contact information (phone number, email address) to ensure it’s accurate
- Updating any branding like logo, tagline, that has changed since you launched your website
- Replacing any obsolete statistics or facts you have cited
- Testing all your links to make sure they lead to live webpages
For business websites that include just a few main pages, this process should not be too difficult. If your website also includes an active blog, you should consider launching a full content audit.
5. Move Your Products or Services Online
Finally, if you’ve been struggling to maintain your revenue during COVID-19-related shutdowns, you may want to consider moving your products or services online. This will allow you to continue driving sales despite not being able to serve customers in person.
Launching a full online store is a great commitment, particularly once you factor in updates to your online marketing strategy and setting up shipping processes. However, this change could pay off not only during the current extreme circumstances but in the long run as well.
An online store helps you to reach anextensive audience and build a national and international –audience. With this in mind, some steps you can take to get started include:
- Adding e-commerce functionality to your site using a plugin such as WooCommerce.
- Creating product pages for your merchandise.
- Setting up a few reliable payment gateways, such as PayPal and Stripe.
- Deciding how you will ship orders to customers and what you will charge for shipping.
- Launching anonline marketing campaign to announce your new online format.
These processes do require a significant investment of your time. However, if you are unable to open your doors at the moment, you may have plenty of time on your hands anyway. Overall, it’s better to be productive, than to simply sit still.
What these COVID-19 businesses uplifting tips show us are business owners that refuse to bury their heads despite the trying times. Hopefully you, too, can glean some insight from these smart tips during the coronavirus and use them for your business.
Just be sure to adjust your strategies and marketing. Meet your customers where they are now (and that’s mostly at home and online). Find a way to pivot and give your business the best chance to stay afloat by making your website easily found online.
Yes, these are challenging times for everyone. But your business can still flourish if you’re willing to try a new approach and not pull back on your business site during a critical time for your company to show compassion and empathy. Now is the time to connect with your customers like never before and not separate from them.
Mukul Dixit, a skilled and accomplished ‘Content Marketing Strategist’ is formally associated with Nextraone – one of the leading web hosting service provider. He possesses diverse professional experience in digital marketing. His strong interest in reading and writing about technology, cloud computing, and the latest software developments enables him to develop informative and effective technology-oriented content. He can be followed @mukul_dixit1.