Monthly Archives: November 2010

Coming to Calgary (my home town) – Deal of the Day by RedFlagDeals.com

I had a great chat with Cara Sealock, the deal buyer manager in Calgary. She was telling me about how exciting it was to speak to local SMBs regarding the deal of the day concept and the reception so far within the Calgary market. If you have not already, sign up to receive offers at DealoftheDay.ca.

Deal of the Day in Calgary

Of course, Groupon and LivingSocial are currently the two most popular sites operating in Calgary, with a host of other guys, however, RedFlagDeals.com is looking to establish itself as it has in Toronto and Montreal. Since Groupon’s launch in Calgary on August 8, they have saved Calgarians over $1.3M and LivingSocial’s since September 16, they have saved Calgarians over $4.6M off retail price – that’s a lot of savings.

For business owners, check out this video that pretty much explains the benefits of participating in deal of the day. If you are interested in participating in Calgary, contact Cara Sealock at 403 204 5746.

One Helluva Week for YellowPages.ca Mobile

Well the last 7-days have been nothing short of a great week for YellowPages.ca mobile.

Some recaps:

– 1.8M downloads of its mobile applications
– 20% of business looks-up are coming from Mobile by the end of 2010
– launch of the Windows Mobile 7 Application, first local search application for Windows Mobile 7 (read press release)
– integration on one of Canada’s largest mobile news applications and mobile website, The Globe and Mail
– launch of AutoTrader.ca application for Blackberry (check out the Blackberry App World to download)

All in all, the momentum of YellowPages.ca is pretty impressive and is generating massive value for users and businesses a like.

In case you missed it, here is the screenshot of the Globe and Mail integration:

Owly Images

Download the Globe and Mail application from iTunes.

For the full list of mobile application provided by YellowPages.ca, check out YellowPages.ca Mobile.

In case you are wondering what the reach of Yellow Pages Group is on the web, check out my post from last week; Yellow Pages Group is Canada’s Largest Canadian Internet Company! Is It True? Yes, Here’s Why [Part 1]

It’s Time for Canadian SMBs to Think Mobile

Over the past few years I have blogged often about news in the Canadian Space regarding mobile. Up until this point in time, I never stated explicitly that mobile was a necessity for SMBs in Canada but, we are at the tipping point in Canada of mobile usage (especially SmartPhone usage) and it is now very important for SMBs to start thinking mobile and most importantly make sure their content is mobile friendly.

What is mobile friendly content from a SMB? In a nutshell, it is when you can view your content on a mobile device (Apple iPhone, Blackberry, Android, etc.) in a native format by which the user does not have to zoom or pinch the screen (for all your iPhone users). For this example, I am going to use my personal Dentist, Optimum Dentistry in Marda Loop to demonstrate the difference between Mobile Enhanced Content and Rendering on a Mobile Phone.

This is Rendering on a iPhone (and is not mobile enhanced content):

Home Page:
Optimum Dentistry Not Mobile Enhanced Home Page

Hours of Operations Page:
Optimum Dentistry Not Mobile Enhanced Hours of Operation Page

This is Mobile Enhanced Content:

Home Page:
Optimum Dentistry Mobile Enhanced Home Page

Hours of Operations Page:
Optimum Dentistry Mobile Enhanced Hours of Operations Page

As a user – which one your you prefer to land on?

Mobile enhanced content basically means rendering for the native device in which the user is viewing, which really means that your website designer need to put some specific code on your website that detects the users device and serves up content formatted for that device.

Normally, mobile sites will consist of less content than website. Keep in simple – a) what you do, b) hours of operations, c) map and driving directions (you can usually use the native device for this), d) what you sell. Keep all the enhanced content, flash, massive photo galleris and in some cases if you have advanced forms or e-commerce off you mobile site; devices are too small and in mobile, LESS = MORE.

To recap:

1) If you don’t own a iPhone or Blackberry, find somebody who does and type in your website URL on the phone’s browser
2) If your site looks like the first example above, it is not mobile enhanced, call your web designer and if he/she can’t help, fire them and find somebody else
3) If your site looks like the second example above, then you are good to go

What About Mobile Marketing in Canada?

Well this is where it gets very easy. There are really 2 key places that you need to be concerned about when it comes to mobile marketing in Canada. Google and YellowPages.ca. NOTE: if you are a client of YellowPages.ca, all your business listing information gets syndicated to Google (as well as MSN and Yahoo). If you want a quick snapshot of syndication in Canada, check out an old blog post titled – Directory Assistance in Canada – Paid and Free DA – Facts Every Consumer and Small Business Owner Should Know.

Both Google and YellowPages.ca are completely mobile enhanced web properties. See examples below for looking at data on Ramanda Hotel and Suites in Vancouver.

Google:
Ramada Inn and Suites in Vancouver on Google Mobile

To learn more about Google Mobile click here.

YellowPages.ca:
Ramada Inn and Suites in Vancouver on YellowPages.ca Mobile
Ramada Inn and Suites in Vancouver on YellowPages.ca Mobile

To learn more about YellowPages.ca Mobile click here.

The above are mobile web. In the application space, Google does not disclose its download numbers, but YellowPages.ca has now been downloaded over 1.8M times, which by all accounts makes it the most downloaded local application in Canada. At this point, any content that you have on YellowPages.ca is automatically ported over to YellowPages.ca Mobile + YellowPages.ca Mobile Applications, so SMBs are getting growing coverage.

In March of this year, I posted the following blog post which shows you some screenshots of the iPhone application by YellowPages.ca – New YellowPages.ca Mobile Application Available. In June, I followed up with the following post introducing the iPad application for YellowPages.ca – First Look – YellowPages.ca iPad Application which managed to become #1 within 24-hours of its launch and has consistently stayed in the top 50 downloaded applications.

Screenshot of iPad Application Search Results:
iPad Application Search Results for Calgary

Enhanced SMB Content on the iPad:
iPad Application Enhanced Business Content

Lastly, back in April I did a comparison of the top mobile applications in Canada, from a SMB perspective – the voting is still open if you want to vote for your favorite mobile interface, please do so.

In Conclusion …. 3 Tips for Canadian SMBs on Mobile Thinking

1) Make sure your content is mobile enhanced on your website URL (talk to your web design company)

2) Make sure your content is distributed in YellowPages.ca and Google (this will give you the majority of coverage and at this point is included in both offerings, no need to pay extra)

3) In your analytics, track the number of mobile views (you will probably be surprised at the increasing number of your customers who are accessing your basic business data via mobile).

Overtime as the mobile space heats up, this simplified strategy will change, but for now, keep it simple, prep your content and start to monitor usage.