After months of speculation and testing, Whatsapp Business has been launched to help improve the business experience like making it easier for businesses to respond to customers, separating customer and personal messages, and creating an official presence. The company today launched the simply-named WhatsApp Business, available on Android devices as a free download
Whatsapp Business Features
#1 Business Profiles: Help customers with useful information such as a business description, email or store addresses, and website.
#2 Messaging Tools: Save time with smart messaging tools quick replies that provide fast answers to frequently asked questions, greeting messages that introduce customers to your business, and away messages that let them know you’re busy.
#3 Messaging Statistics: Review simple metrics like the number of messages read to see what’s working.
#4 WhatsApp Web: Send and receive messages with WhatsApp Business on your desktop.
#5 Account Type: People will know that they’re talking to a business because you will be listed as a Business Account. Over time, some businesses will have Confirmed Accounts once it’s been confirmed that the account phone number matches the business phone number.
Whatsapp Business will remain free in the long term, but WhatsApp plans on charging for additional capabilities in the future. Basically, it’ll eventually take on a freemium model, but at least the company doesn’t plan on taking away any existing features, and you are getting a fair bit of functionality to start.
The app is already up and running from the Google Play Store in Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, the U.K. and the U.S. The rest of the world will be able to access the app in the coming weeks.
7 Things You Can Do Today To Make Google Fall Head Over Heels In Love With Your Small Business Website
Creating your own small business website can be a scary thing to do. It requires some planning to get it right and make Google sit up and take notice of your site at first glance. Small business website search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the keys, but all too often, astute business people leave the creation of their websites up to a family member or a friend who happens to know something about it. This is strange, for they wouldn’t dream of letting the same people build their bricks and mortar store or office.
Of course, getting an expert who fully understands small business SEO to build your website is not likely to come cheap, but it may be the best solution if you are starting out from scratch. However, this article is aimed at those small businesses that already have a website, but are disappointed at how poorly it performs. If you’re frustrated because your website appears on page 42 of the Google search results, and no one is visiting your website, here are 7 things you can do to quickly improve your results.
1. Create an Effective Website Title Tag, Description Meta Tag, and Keywords Meta Tag
The most important part of any website page (in the eyes of the search engines) is the title tag. The title is enclosed between the opening title tag: and the closing title tag: It is located in the head section of an HTML document, or web page. You should use your page’s main keyword in your title. Try to use your main keyword near the beginning of your title, and perhaps again near the end. But always strive to make your title readable, and not obviously keyword stuffed.
Your description tag plays an important role in SEO for your local small business. This tag is used by most of the search engines in their listings, so you need to spend some time getting this right. The description tag looks like this: and it is also found in the head section of your web page.
Something brief such as, “Acme Incorporated, Makers of Blue Widgets,” gets the message across, but you could do much better. Try to list benefits rather than features, and use your main keyword in your description as well. Keep your description reasonably brief, but not too short. Something like, “Acme, Inc., Makers of the Strongest, Most Powerful and Affordable Widgets on the Planet” is better.
Like a headline for an ad or sales flyer, your description may take time to develop. Start with a list of all of the benefits your product or service offers and then try to write 20 different descriptions for your site based on those benefits. Test your descriptions by reading them to your customers, employees or others familiar with your business. You’ll find out which description resonates most strongly with your potential prospects – and that’s good for the search engines and for your sales.
The keywords tag, again found in the head section of your web pages, looks like this: The keywords you choose for your page are important because they tell the search engines what should be found on the page. Google and all the other search engines present search results based on relevancy – how relevant your web pages are to the keywords and phrases your prospects are searching for.
Keep your keyword phrases to less than seven and don’t repeat the same words. For example, if you have two keyword phrases, which are, “blue widgets” and “bright blue widgets,” you should only include unique words after including the first “blue widgets” keyword.
Curious to know what your Title, Description, Meta and Keyword tags currently look like? Here’s a simple tip – just go to any page of your website, then click on “View Source” or “View Page Source” from the “View” menu. There you’ll be able to see exactly what your tags are telling Google when they crawl your site.
2. Optimize Your Website Copy
Your website copy consists of the words on every page of your site. Try to make it interesting and informative. One simple way to arrange your articles, or informative pages, is to use a simple three-step format. Begin with an introductory paragraph that tells your visitor what you are going to tell them. Then in the next two or three paragraphs, tell them. Finally, wind up the article by telling them what you just told them.
This may seem overly simple, but it works. Speak to your website audience as you would to a seven-year-old child. Don’t patronize them, but lay it out clearly in simple steps using straightforward language that anyone can understand.
When writing your copy for each of your pages, make sure to focus on one or two keywords per page. If you are selling widgets in all colors and you also sell thingamajigs, then widgets should be on one page and thingamajigs on another. Keep it simple for your customers and the search engines by focusing on one idea per page and your customers will thank you for it, and Google will thank you too.
3. Establish an Acceptable Keyword Density for Your Website Copy
While optimizing your website copy you also need to establish a keyword density that is acceptable to the search engines. Opinions differ, but somewhere between 2% and 5% is probably about right. This means that for effective small business SEO, your main keyword phrase should appear around three times for every 100 words.
Where your keyword appears is important too. Try to use your main keyword or phrase twice in the first paragraph, once in the second paragraph, once around the middle of the article, and once again near the end of the article. Try to start and end the first paragraph with your main keyword if possible, but don’t force it. Always aim for copy that is readable before copy that has perfect keyword density.
4. Create Quality Back Links to Your Website
Increasingly, the search engines are giving added weight to the number of quality backlinks your website has. It used to be that reciprocal linking was quite acceptable, and it still is, but now Google and the other search engines give higher credibility to one-way backlinks as far as your search engine rankings are concerned.
And it’s not just any backlinks either. You need to have quality back links or backlinks from sites that are similar to yours. It’s not much good getting a backlink from a site about butterflies if your site focuses on racing cars. With Google, it’s all about relevance. You should also strive to get backlinks from so-called authority sites. These are sites that the search engines deem to be an authority on their chosen subject. They tend to be quite big and to have been around for some time.
5. Use Local Directories Effectively
If you are marketing to a local market, then make use of local directories. How do you find them? If, for example, you are located in New York, then go to Google and search for, “directory” + “new york.” This will return a list of all the local directories in that city. You could even try searching for, “blue widgets directory” + “new york,” if you are marketing blue widgets.
Once you find a suitable directory, submit your website to it. People do search on local directories, so even if your product has worldwide appeal, there’s a greater chance that you will get the sale if someone finds you in a local directory over someone else located in another continent who can deliver just as cost-effectively or as quickly.
6. Create a Proper Site Map and Google Site Map
Every website should have a sitemap. This is merely a directory of all your site’s pages with links to everyone. You should have a link from every page of your site back to your sitemap, and your sitemap must be updated whenever a new page is added.
A Google Site Map is also a sitemap, but one that is in a special format that Google can easily spider. It has the great advantage of allowing Google to instantly “see” your site and evaluate it. It can be a very useful tool in getting Google to index your site more quickly than otherwise. For more information on creating a Google Site Map, go to Google Webmaster
7. Add Fresh Original Content to Your Website at an Acceptably Measured Pace
Your website should never be considered finished. It should always be a work in progress that is constantly expanding with fresh and original content. The easiest way to do this is to add new articles on specific subjects on a regular basis. One article a week is the least you should aim for, but don’t add content too quickly either. Dumping 100 articles a day into your site will ultimately work against you, because the search engines look for organic growth – in other words, growth that seems natural. Since it’s not likely that you were able to write 100 articles in one day, Google and the other search engines will see this as unnatural and will count it against you in your page ranking.
SEO for your local small business is easier than you might think. Getting Google to fall head over heels in love with your small business website is not rocket science. You only need to implement a few simple things on a regular basis, and over time Google will notice and your page rank – and your placement with the search engines – will start climbing.
Lithium Discovered In Ghana
Ghana, a nation on West Africa’s Gulf of Guinea, is known for diverse wildlife, old forts and secluded beaches, such as at Busua. Coastal towns Elmina and Cape Coast contain posubans (native shrines), colonial buildings and castles-turned-museums that serve as testimonials to the slave trade. North of Cape Coast, vast Kakum National Park has a treetop-canopy walkway over the rainforest.
Ghana has discovered a new mineral, Lithium in commercial quantities.
Lithium, which is among the top 10 most expensive minerals in the world was discovered in the Volta Region by the Minerals Commission.
According to the Chief Executive of the Commission, Kwaku Addai Antwi-Boasiako, the mineral was identified during a nationwide exploration exercise.
“The mining activities will start but we want to attract investments into the Volta Region, that is where we have the Lithium and all these rare minerals. These are the minerals of the future. Lithium is about green energy and renewable energy. So if you have lithium and all these rare minerals in the Volta Region, you will want to expand the base of mineral production.
The presence of these minerals is as important as having the money to mine them for now, we know we have it,” he told Citi News.
Mr. Antwi-Boasiako added that the Commission was making efforts to ensure that the discovery sites are not encroached upon by illegal miners.
He further noted that the Commission will follow due procedures before it considers issuance of licenses to companies to mine the mineral in the country, noting that it will primarily consider electronic applications from interested investors to avoid issues of corruption.
What is Lithium and What are its Benefits?
Lithium can be used for the manufacture of batteries, heat-resistant glass, ceramics, among other things.
Both lithium metal and its compounds have many uses. Lithium stearate is mixed with oils to make all-purpose and high-temperature lubricants.
Lithium hydroxide is used to absorb carbon dioxide in space vehicles
Lithium is alloyed with aluminum, copper, manganese, and cadmium to make high-performance alloys for aircraft.
Bahnmetall consists of lead-containing 0.04% lithium, 0.7% calcium and 0.6% sodium is harder than pure lead and was used for railroad car bearings in Germany.
Compounds such as LiAlH4 and organolithium reagents (LiMe, LiPh, etc.) are very important as reagents in organic chemistry
Lithium metal has the highest specific heat of any solid element and its sometimes used as battery anode material (high electrochemical potential). Lithium compounds are used in dry cells and storage batteries.
Lithium is used in the manufacture of special high strength glasses and ceramics sometimes, lithium-based compounds such as lithium carbonate (Li2CO3) are used as drugs to treat manic-depressive disorders.
Iran seems flustered over currency depreciation against the US dollar
Iran seems flustered over currency depreciation against the US dollar, and has, therefore, put in measures to halt the devaluation of the country’s currency. This is a move seen as a great disappointment in President Hassan Rouhani’s efforts to create more jobs in the country after the 2015 nuclear deal.
The Iranian rial has been dwindling in value for some time now, depreciating to an all-time low against the US dollar on Wednesday, February 14, 2018, when it traded for 50,000 rials, 30 percent higher than its value in August 2017.
But the rial posted a slight rebound later in the day, when police arrested black-market currency dealers, shut down a number of exchange offices and blocked hundreds of bank accounts owned by major currency traders, local media reported.
According to the Arman-e Emrooz newspaper, 755 bank accounts were also blocked as part of the police operation.
For many Iranians, the dollar-to-rial exchange rate is an indicator of the country’s overall economic climate.
The Central Bank of Iran (CBI) made an announcement in response to this sharp fall of the local currency to pre-sell gold coins and Certificates of Deposit (CDs) with an interest rate of 20 percent for a one-year term.
The country’s central bank was putting in these measures to scare speculators from continually betting against the rial as they had been doing over the past months, which has led to the currency’s drop in value.
Failure of the government to pump more money into the economy, drop in oil price, and high levels of non-performing loans, have drastically strained Iran’s economy thus far.
The central bank is doing all that it can to contain this financial crisis through structural reforms.
“The central bank used to issue the CDs at a rate of 16-17 percent. Now it will increase it to 20 percent, with the aim of creating financial stability,” Pouya Jabal-Ameli, a CBI analyst, reported.
One of the strategic plans the central bank put in place last year was to reduce interest rates on deposits from more than 20 percent to 15 percent.
The move is aimed at encouraging Iranians to withdraw their money from banks and invest it in small- and medium-sized businesses – to help fight against a slump in the industry as well as boost employment.
Cash now stays in the currency market instead of being used for job creation with the unusual depreciation of the rial and the gaining of US dollar. Buying foreign money is a type of investment for many Iranians – and the more the US dollar gains, the more demand increases, resulting in less investment in businesses.
In summer 2017, the unemployment rate stood as high as 11.7 percent, according to the Statistical Center of Iran. But the Iranian parliament’s research agency puts the unofficial unemployment rate as high as 22.6 percent.
Nearly 5,000 people were detained and 21 also died in an unrest over joblessness in Iran, which erupted in late December and continued for days, spreading to dozens of cities across the country.
The protests were kindled after Rouhani’s budget bill, which was submitted for review in parliament, proposing a 50 percent increase in the price of fuel, as well as a review on the number of households receiving monthly cash subsidies. After the strife, the administration rescinded their decisions supporting the bill.
Rouhani won re-election in May 2017 in a landslide win built on his success at stabilizing the economy and having crippling international sanctions lifted.
Iranians have been pinning their hopes on the historic nuclear deal – reached between Iran and world powers three years ago – to bring about foreign investment and jobs, but the deal has not been able to do wonders.
SOURCE: AL JAZEERA.
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