In this time of uncertainty, many community members and people in your Association's industry are going to be looking to you for answers about how your members are doing. Who is still open, how they can access your members' services, and what new services are being implemented.
Members of the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce are business owners and leaders, many of whom have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and the economic repercussions. They’ve had to temporarily close their businesses for the safety of themselves, their employees, and the local community. (But the bills are continuing to come.)
So what is the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce doing to help? Well, they’ve put together a special member directory for COVID-19. On that directory, you’ll find how all local businesses (well, those who are members) are responding to COVID-19. In other words, which restaurants are still offering take-out? Which businesses are offering free delivery?
Not only is this valuable for community members, but it’s helping drive business to those local companies that can’t necessarily operate as normal.
Whether the target audience hitting your website is a local/geographically linked community, or an industry like hotels, restaurants, home services or banks, creating a Short Description field and/or Affiliation Filter in your Online Directory can help get visitors to your site the information they need.
- To use the Short Description field on your member listings and have it display for all members, go to Admin > Set Preferences > Online Directory Settings > Results Page Settings.
- For each Level in which you have any member listing, enable the "Description" field to show, and save settings.
- In each member that has specific hours, closures, services or resources pertaining to the pandemic, add the details in the Short Description field of their profile with the term "COVID-19" included. For example:
- For a bank with drive-through services only, enter the following Short Description in their profile Listing record: "COVID Info: ABC Bank's walk-up teller windows and offices are closed, but we are open during normal hours with drive-through ATM and teller services."
- Add these details to each member Listing, with the keyword "COVID" entered along with the details.
- On your Online Directory search, type in the word "Covid" to your keyword search, and run the search. Copy this URL (it will be your subdomain, then /directory/results/results.aspx?keywords=covid&adkeyword=covid), and paste into emails, onto your home page, or anywhere else where you want to link to the members who have COVID-specific details on their Listing.
If you'd like to take this a step further and add filters to your directory search page to find business doing takeout/delivery, businesses that are closed, etc., follow the steps:
- Create an Affiliation Code for each filter you want to include on the directory. Each should be in the same Affiliation Type (you may want to set up a special "COVID" Type as well), and flagged to Available for Web Searches.
- Select the profiles that should be included in each Affiliation in the Profile Selector, and add the Affiliation Code(s) you just created to those profiles.
- Go to Admin > Set Preferences > Online Directory Settings > Search Page Settings and click open the Extras section. Enable the setting "Affiliation Code Filter" and then enter the Affiliation Type ID number for the Affiliation Type of the Affiliations you created in step 1 (you can see the Affiliation Type ID number in the Affiliation Code creation grid).
- Save Settings. The filters will then appear on your Online Directory Search Page for users to select and apply along with their searches.
Finally, if you'd like to have your members update their listings/descriptions themselves, you can send them a link to Update Profile Info in the Members Only portal, instead of (or in addition to) you manually entering this data into each profile.
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