Tag Archives: Small Businesses

Local students team up to help small businesses go online

Posted by Erica Hanson, Global Program Manager, Google Developer Student Clubs

Recently young developers in Saudi Arabia from Google Developer Student Clubs, a program of university based community groups for students interested in Google technologies, came together to help local small businesses. As more companies across the globe rely on online sales, these students noticed that many of their favorite local stores did not have a presence on the web.

So to help these local shops compete, these up-and-coming developers went into the community and began running workshops to teach local store owners the basics of building a website. Inspired by Google’s fundamentals of digital marketing course, these learning sessions focused on giving small business owners basic front-end skills, while introducing them to easy to use coding tools.

Front-end skills for small business owners

Image of Chrome Devtools

The first goal of these student-run workshops was to teach local store owners the basics of building web interfaces. In particular, they focused on websites that made it easy for customers to make purchases. To do this, the students first taught store owners the basics of HTML, CSS, and JS code. Then, they showed them how to deploy Chrome DevTools, a collection of web developer tools built directly into the Google Chrome browser that allows programmers to inspect and edit HTML, CSS, and JS code to optimize user experience.

Next, the students challenged participants to put their knowledge to use by creating demos of their businesses' new websites. The young developers again used Chrome DevTools to highlight the best practices for testing the demo sites on different devices and screen sizes.

Introduction to coding toolkits

Image of demo created and maintained in workshop.

With the basics of HTML, CSS, JS code, and Chrome DevTools covered, the students also wanted to give the store owners tools to help maintain their new websites. To do this, they introduced the small businesses to three toolkits:

  1. Bootstrap, to help templatize future workflow for the websites.
  2. Codepen, to make testing new features and aspects of the websites easier.
  3. Figma, to assist in the development of initial mockups.

With these basic coding skills, access to intuitive toolkits, and completed website demos, the local businesses owners now had everything they needed to launch their sites to the public - all thanks to a few dedicated students.

Ready to join a Google Developer Student Club near you?

All over the world, students are coming together to learn programming and make a difference in their community as members of local Google Developer Student Clubs. Learn more on how to get involved in projects like this one, here.

Local students team up to help small businesses go online

Posted by Erica Hanson, Global Program Manager, Google Developer Student Clubs

Recently young developers in Saudi Arabia from Google Developer Student Clubs, a program of university based community groups for students interested in Google technologies, came together to help local small businesses. As more companies across the globe rely on online sales, these students noticed that many of their favorite local stores did not have a presence on the web.

So to help these local shops compete, these up-and-coming developers went into the community and began running workshops to teach local store owners the basics of building a website. Inspired by Google’s fundamentals of digital marketing course, these learning sessions focused on giving small business owners basic front-end skills, while introducing them to easy to use coding tools.

Front-end skills for small business owners

Image of Chrome Devtools

The first goal of these student-run workshops was to teach local store owners the basics of building web interfaces. In particular, they focused on websites that made it easy for customers to make purchases. To do this, the students first taught store owners the basics of HTML, CSS, and JS code. Then, they showed them how to deploy Chrome DevTools, a collection of web developer tools built directly into the Google Chrome browser that allows programmers to inspect and edit HTML, CSS, and JS code to optimize user experience.

Next, the students challenged participants to put their knowledge to use by creating demos of their businesses' new websites. The young developers again used Chrome DevTools to highlight the best practices for testing the demo sites on different devices and screen sizes.

Introduction to coding toolkits

Image of demo created and maintained in workshop.

With the basics of HTML, CSS, JS code, and Chrome DevTools covered, the students also wanted to give the store owners tools to help maintain their new websites. To do this, they introduced the small businesses to three toolkits:

  1. Bootstrap, to help templatize future workflow for the websites.
  2. Codepen, to make testing new features and aspects of the websites easier.
  3. Figma, to assist in the development of initial mockups.

With these basic coding skills, access to intuitive toolkits, and completed website demos, the local businesses owners now had everything they needed to launch their sites to the public - all thanks to a few dedicated students.

Ready to join a Google Developer Student Club near you?

All over the world, students are coming together to learn programming and make a difference in their community as members of local Google Developer Student Clubs. Learn more on how to get involved in projects like this one, here.

.dev for all

Posted by Adam Seligman, VP, Developer Relations

Last week we announced the new .dev top-level domain (TLD) was open for Early Access registrations. As of today, .dev is available to anyone through your registrar of choice (typically $12-$15 for standard priced domains, varies by registrar).

We envision .dev as a home for developers. From tools to programming languages to blogs, .dev is the best place for all the amazing things that you build. Over the past few months, we've launched, or re-launched, many of our own developer sites on the new domain. Here are some of our favorites:

  • Learn how to build a better web at web.dev.
  • Start your open source journey with the right license. Did you know that without the right license, software isn't really open source? Opensource.dev explains why.
  • Learn how to build beautiful native apps on iOS and Android from a single codebase. Visit flutter.dev to learn more.
  • Join the TensorFlow community at tfhub.dev.
  • Analyze and tune your software with performance tracing for Android, Linux, and Chrome. Check out perfetto.dev.
  • Explore Google's open source JavaScript and WebAssembly engine at v8.dev
  • Get your hands on Puppeteer, a Node library that provides a high-level API to control Chrome or Chromium over the DevTools Protocol. Get it at pptr.dev.

But we're not done yet! We've got big plans for .dev, and we'd like to invite you to join us. To start, everyone who applied for a ticket to Google I/O 2019 will get a .dev domain at no cost for one year. If you entered the drawing, check your inbox for your redemption code. We'll be moving more of our existing projects and launching some exciting things on .dev in the months to come. We can't wait to see what you build on .dev -- share what you create with #hellodotdev.

Protecting people from illegal robocalls



You’re eating dinner with your family when the phone rings, and you see a phone number that you don’t recognize. You answer and hear a recording: “It’s extremely urgent that we speak to the business owner! We’ve tried to reach you numerous times. Our records indicate that your Google Business Listing has not been claimed...”

This is a common type of robocall, or automated phone call that delivers a pre-recorded message to sell or market services. Some, like informational notices from a doctor’s office, airline or pharmacy, can be useful and are allowed by law. Many others, however, are both useless and illegal in the United States. As the FTC explains: “if the recording is a sales message and you haven't given your written permission to get calls from the company on the other end, the call is illegal.”

Robocallers have targeted Google users for many years. Callers commonly bombard recipients—usually small business owners or individuals—with misleading offers and promotions for improving Google Search and AdWords rankings, or to improve their Google My Business profile. Since the beginning of 2015, we’ve received hundreds of complaints from users about robocalls they’ve received from businesses claiming to be affiliated with Google.

These illegal calls are a huge nuisance, cause small businesses and Google users to unnecessarily worry, and can lead to rip-offs. Illegal robocalls never have, and never will, come from Google.

Unfortunately, this is part of a much larger issue that extends beyond just Google users and customers. The FCC received 215,000 complaints about robocalls in 2014, the FTC gets approximately 150,000 complaints about them every month and says it has brought more than 100 lawsuits against more than 600 companies and individuals responsible for billions of illegal robocalls, to date. Robocallers impersonate many different companies, and have even impersonated the local police, the IRS, and the FTC itself.

If you receive illegal robocalls, here are a few things you can do right now to protect yourself:

  • Report callers to Google, and also the FTC or the FCC
  • Hang up the phone. Do not press any key, even if the voice recording prompts you to in order to speak with a live person or to be taken off the call list. 
  • Contact your phone company to see if they can block calls from any numbers. 
  • Register your personal number with the National Do Not Call Registry at: https://www.donotcall.gov/register/reg.aspx or call 1-888-382-1222. 

It’s difficult for Google to take action against callers because they often use untraceable phone numbers, fake company names, and massive global networks of intermediaries. However, today we’re filing an action in California against one search engine optimization company for making these robocalls and confusing our users. It’s unfortunate when a problem must be addressed in a court of law, but we believe this course of action will protect our users and discourage this practice more broadly.

Running a small business is hard work under the best of circumstances. Dealing with illegal robocallers isn’t just a waste of time, it can result in wasted resources and significant damage to your business. We hope these tips, and shining a light on the issue, will help discourage and eventually eliminate this practice.