News

  • The Kingston Young Entrepreneurs Group is having an open forum luncheon to unleash the groups potential in our community.
  • The Greater Kingston Chamber of Commerce deadline for advertising in the directory this year is fast approaching. Make sure to get your contract in before September 10 to ensure your ad is placed where you want it!

Articles

Internet Access in Kingston

article by: Matthew Fair

Ever wonder what ISP stands for? I wish it meant "I Smell Pancakes". After a six month trial with Bell Sympatico High Speed I'm once again looking for a new internet access provider. Not that I was unhappy with the physical service, but Sympatico decided to change the service agreement and the contract price without notifying me first. So, I'm shopping around for a new provider and here is what I have found so far. (For the record, this comparison is based on similar high speed, 1meg or faster.)

Company Speed Price Reliability Service
Sympatico* +
"They have pretty good customer service. So no matter how much you dislike the big business style they are the best bet."

KOS*

"Quick tech support."
InterNet Kingston*
"I called them to fix a problem, I had to leave a message and they never called me back."
IGS*
No referral - I did not find anyone who uses their services. I called their offices to get some more information, left a message and did not receive a call back.
COGECO +
"My service was down for 2 days and I waited on hold for a total of two hours and still never got to talk to anyone there."

* High speed service is actually provisioned on Bell lines.
+ Modem rental of $10 even if you own your modem!
Modem rental is a sticky situation. Both Cogeco and Sympatico charge modem rental fees even if you have your own DSL or cable modem.

In the end I have a feeling Sympatico will once again call me a customer. If only I had more options to choose from! Would you like real maple syrup or the fake stuff?

If you know of any service provider who would like to improve my current opinion about companies offering high speed access, drop me a line at matt@interkingston.com

Matt is the owner of Inter Kingston Web Design

Homework for the Tourism Industry

article by: Lindsey Fair

If you're in the tourism business you're finally going to get a second to breath after a long and hopefully successful summer. But this doesn't mean you can forget about business. Take your breath and jump right back in to get ready for a busy off season and prep for next summer, and you've got to do this soon.

You're probably wondering what this has to do with web marketing right? Well what a great time to put your website to work for you and make sure it's ready for the traffic next summer. This means everything from a general evaluation to search engine optimization to completely redesigning it. So let's get started!

We've done a quick comparison study of some of our local tourist destinations using our focus group. They've evaluated these website's based only on these 5 criteria: design, placement in search engines, content - is contact & location easy to understand and find, is there value-added services that entice me to buy, bookmark or pass on the site, and do they list their prices. We've totaled that to give an overall mark out of 25. If you're in the tourism industry you should be doing something similar with your staff, customers and prospects or finding a general focus group like we have to provide feedback.

  Design Search ability Content Overall
      contact & location value-added price  
Holiday Inn
www.kingstonholidayinn.com
2 2 2 1 1 8
Hochelaga Inn
www.someplacesdifferent.com
2 3 4 2 4 15
Howard Johnson
www.hojo.ca
3.5 2 4 1 4 14.5
Marine Museum
www.marmus.ca
2.5 4 3 2.5 3 15
Fort Henry
www.forthenry.com
4 3.5 4 2.5 4 18
Boiler Room Climbing Gym www.boilerroom.ca 4.5 3 4.5 3 4 19

Where do you go from here? Some of the things you can be working on over the fall and winter months are:

  • update the look of your site
  • resubmit your site to search engines
  • link your site to other sites
  • make sure your map & directions are accurate
  • make sure your content is up-to-date
  • get your site evaluated
  • add some value-added services like: photos, contests, free stuff, chat rooms, local content, links, etc.

This list should keep you pretty busy, but the list goes on and on. The important thing to note is that now is the time to think about where you want to be next summer. Good luck and enjoy your 15 minute breather.

Lindsey is a web strategist with Market Me