Google’s Offer to Help Small Businesses Get Online

With the majority of Canadians looking online for a product or service, if you do not have a website, you may be missing an opportunity to find new customers and have new customers find you.

According to a survey by Angus Reid, commissioned by Google, 71% of small business owners have thought about creating a website but had decided that they did not have the time to learn the necessary skills to create one from scratch.  With less than half of small businesses in Canada having a web presence, this leaves a lot of untapped market.

If you are one of those businesses who would like help in creating a website but do not know where to start there are many options for you out there.  One of which is Google’s new program ‘Get Your Business Online’ which launched this week in Toronto.

What’s the Offer?

Google has partnered with Yola to offer free domain registration and free web hosting for a year.  It is then offering a $100 Google AdWords voucher, to help promote your new website and its products or services.

Once the 12 month free trial has finished, you will have the option to continue to host with Yola or look for an alternative hosting company.  Whichever suits your needs, or your pocket.

Who is it Targeted At?

The program aims to simplify getting your business online.  It offers ‘out the box’ templates with which to slot in the relevant information for your business.  The simple templates are easy to use and do not require you to employ a website designer making it quick and easy to get your business online.

What to Consider

The templates included in the program are designed to appeal to the mass market.  They are not designed to your company or your businesses specific needs.  If you have something particular in mind which is not included in the template, you will need to employ a professional or spend some time to learn how to make these changes.

Although the program offers you a simple solution to create the physical website, you still need to take your time to consider the structure and content of the site.  By using online tools such as Google’s Keyword Tool to assess the words which people are using to find similar products and services, you will gain an insight to what your potential new clients are looking for. It is important to spend this time creating good content that reflects the brand of your company.

What’s Different About this Product?

The main drivers for this program are that the start up cost is entirely free and that the Google name is associated with it.  However this is not a new product for the market.  Many companies are already offering low cost domain registration and hosting packages with varying additional incentives.    As with any product, they key is to do your research, consider your requirements and then decide on the best product for you.

For more information visit Google’s Canada Get Your Business Online.