Websites free for Virginia businesses

Virginia businesses now have a new, easy way to get online, thanks to Google.

Working with local partners to design the program, Google has teamed with Intuit to provide its Intuit Websites offerings for free, including an easy-to-build website, a customized domain name and web-hosting for one year.

Virginia businesses participating in Virginia Get Your Business Online also receive a local business listing on Google Places and free tools, training and resources to help them grow and succeed.

Small businesses need to be online because that’s where their customers are, say business leaders. While 97 percent of Americans look online for local products and services, 44 percent of Virginia small businesses do not have a website or online presence. The perception that getting online is complex, costly and time-consuming has prevented many small businesses from taking the first step.

“Small businesses are missing out on a huge opportunity to reach new customers in Virginia and beyond,” said Scott Levitan, marketing director for Google. “Virginia Get Your Business Online will help make it fast, easy and free for Virginia businesses to get online.”

Businesses can get online either through Virginiagetonline.com, or in person through a series of Google-hosted events throughout the state. In Richmond, the events will be held September 23 and 24 at Centerstage. The program will be available online for a year.

Among the organizations that have worked with Google and Intuit on the project are Meetup, SCORE, the Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce, the Retail Merchants Association, the Virginia Hospitality and Travel Association, the Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the Virginia Asian Chamber of Commerce, RichTech, and the Hanover Association of Businesses and Chamber of Commerce.
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Community

Villa’s Flagler Housing wins national NAEH award


St. Joseph's Villa’s Flagler Housing & Homeless Services was one of three entities to earn the National Alliance to End Homelessness' Champion of Change Award. The awards were presented Nov. 17 during a ceremony at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

NAEH annually recognizes proven programs and significant achievements in ending child and family homelessness.

Flagler completed its transition from an on-campus shelter to the community-based model of rapid rehousing in 2013, and it was one of the nation's first rapid re-housing service providers to be certified by NAEH. > Read more.

RIR’s Christmas tree lighting rescheduled for Dec. 12


Richmond International Raceway's 13th annual Community Christmas tree lighting has been rescheduled from Dec. 6 to Monday, Dec. 12, at 6:30 p.m., due to inclement weather expected on the original date.

Entertainment Dec. 12 will be provided by the Laburnum Elementary School choir and the Henrico High School Mighty Marching Warriors band. Tree decorations crafted by students from Laburnum Elementary School and L. Douglas Wilder Middle School will be on display. Hot chocolate and cookies will be supplied by the Henrico High School football boosters. > Read more.
Entertainment

Weekend Top 10


Given the warm weather lately, Saturday’s RVA Polar Plunge Winter Fest, benefiting Special Olympics Virginia, might actually be enjoyable! Other weekend events you’re sure to enjoy include the 14th annual Richmond Kids Expo at the Richmond Raceway Complex, the Richmond Symphony and The Taters in concert at The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen, and the Richmond Ballet Minds in Motion Team XXL performing at the Henrico Theatre. This is also the last weekend to check out HATTheatre’s production of “Bill W. and Dr. Bob.” For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

 

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American Legion Post 125, located at 1401 Hilliard Rd., will hold a dance with a live band every Friday and Saturday from 8 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Snacks and coffee are provided; drinks are available for purchase. All dances are open to the public. Cost is $7 on Fridays and $8 on Saturdays and benefits American Legion Post 125, a nonprofit veterans organization. For details, call 716-0800. Full text

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