Revamp and Renovate!

Have you noticed anything different about the n49.ca homepage? To get everyone into the holiday spirit, we have implemented a seasonal theme. Check it out now, because unlike the real snow, these flakes will have melted by the new year.

Over the past two weeks our development team has been working hard to improve the n49 user experience. The result has been several bug fixes and updates to n49. These updates include warnings when users are attempting to add files that exceed the size limit and notifying users when they try to access n49 with antiquated browsers.

Big files Hello Bar with Warning

The development team is also working on streamlining the n49 member signup/login process and our process for writing reviews. Users can expect to see improvements to these processes in the new year. The team has also been doing some serious Facebook R&D in order to better integrate the n49 review management system with Facebook.

Over the next three weeks, the n49 team will continue these initiatives. We are also planning to roll out some important changes to our Donation Dollars program in 2014, so stay tuned for more news!

Spring is in the air!

It has been a while since we have updated our blog, and with spring upon us and multiple projects in the air, the time seemed right to share what has been going on here at N49.
Stair Climbers
Recently, some ambitious members of our development team participated in the CN Tower Climb for the World Wildlife Foundation. All told the climb raised $1,238,920 to help protect wildlife species at risk. Way to go team!

N49.ca Updates

N49.ca members might have noticed our snazzy new navigation bar as well as some recent changes to the N49.ca directory page which have made it easier to see related businesses.

navbar
We have some exciting updates to the look and feel of the N49.ca homepage scheduled for the coming months, so keep your eyes peeled!

Crazy for Gourmet Burgers

A crazy burger trend has hit Toronto and it doesn’t appear to be letting up. From simple to extravagant, this American classic has transcended its fast food roots and positioned itself firmly in the world of haute cuisine. That may be a slight exaggeration but you get the picture.

Since us N49’ers are all burger fanatics, we’ve compiled the hottest burger joints over at dining.ca. Here are a few highlights:

1. Burger’s Priest

2. The Stockyards

3. Gourmet Burger Co.

Using online reviews to the fullest – Caplan's Appliances shows us how!

Some businesses are starting to really embrace online consumer reviews, even using reviews in their marketing campaigns and as a competitive advantage. One company following this trend is Caplan’s Appliances. Caplan’s currently has over 120 reviews many of which they have commented on.

Robert Caplan loves all of the reviews they receive, good or bad.

“Of course we love the positive, but even the negative reviews are welcome because they show me and our staff how we can improve our customer experience.”

Caplan’s even went so far as to publish some of the reviews in their latest print ad in the Toronto Star.

Check out all of Caplan’s reviews on their website testimonials page or on n49.ca

Caplan's Appliances Toronto Star Ad

Caplan's Appliances Toronto Star Ad


10 cool things about n49 that you may not know

1. FREE LISTINGS FOR ALL

Any business can add a free listing along with an unlimited photo gallery, video gallery and more.

2. FREE WEBSITES
Don’t have one? No problem! Businesses that don’t have a website (or even a domain name) can get one for free, compliments of n49.ca. Azevedo.kitchens.ca is an example of a free site that anyone can build in minutes.

3. IT’S A WIKI
Anyone can add or edit any listing (unless the listing is paid). This includes adding photos, videos, articles, etc.

4. VIDEO VIDEO VIDEO
Business listings can include one or more videos and members can add videos to reviews and profiles.

5. THE DOMAINS
n49 incorporates many generic domain names so you can find what you’re looking for fast! Looking for somewhere to dine? Check out www.Dining.ca – it’s that easy!

6. USER REVIEWS
Anybody can review any business in Canada and add photos or video. Members can comment on reviews and businesses can respond.

7. REVIEW MANAGEMENT
Any business can print out custom review cards to hand out, add “review us” buttons to website and emails, and even get automatic review feeds right on their website.

8. QUICK QUOTE
Many categories have a Quick Quote feature that makes it easy for members to get free quotes from companies – get quotes for anything from business cards, caterers or home renovations!

9. DONATION DOLLARS
We donate $1 to charity for every review our members write. The reviewer can choose where the dollar goes from a list of charities!

10. MEMBER COMMUNITY
Every member gets their own profile – like silver.n49.ca – and can friend other members. You can even join n49 with a Facebook account!

Online reviews. A Tsunami for Canadian Small business

Most small and even large businesses in Canada have had a tough time adjusting to the Internet. Many still don’t even have a basic web presence. Now websites like n49, Homestars and Yelp that allow consumers to review businesses are popping up everywhere. This is the third big Internet wave for SME’s and it’s the killer wave. It a Tsunami. If you own a small business and you have not begun to manage your online reputation, time is running out fast . Like users of Trip Advisor for travel, people will start googling Company Name + Reviews, like “Caplans Appliances Reviews” to check out a companies track record before doing business.

It’s time to watch this video rant and start getting your customers to review you online.