This directory was established in response to a need. No where else did a comprehensive, quality list of independent local businesses in Calgary exist. We examined several similar setups and then wrote down what we feel they did wrong.
- Provides a clean site that targets your core customers.
- Provides a large retailer free environment to promote yourself.
- List your business as business to customer or business to business.
- Quality exposure of your brand to customers interested in supporting local business.
- Low cost advertising with static or random placement.
- Group advertising as C.I.B.C. to increase customer interest in the site.
- Improved Google search engine ranking with cross linking.
- Spam resistent email address listings
- Monthly site traffic statistics provided.
The result; an online directory of small business that works. For you and your customers.
Why establish a cooperative? Because independent businesses, no matter the segment, all face the challenge of national and international competition that, because of higher purchasing power, can undersell you.
Many business leaders realize this dilutes the quality and service of the market place, and as a result, purposely deliver superior customer service and unique products. But it’s difficult to get your message out there due to the saturation of the advertising market by big retailers.
This has even occurred in online directories elsewhere, large names end up competing and diluting local shops in the ad space. Here, on C.I.B.C. that will not happen. In order to be listed in our directory, you must prove that you are local only, majority ownership or founded in the city of Calgary and greater area.
It will ultimately fall to the customer base of this directory to deem if your business is local Calgary, so those companies that claim to be majority owned or founded in the city may in fact be deemed “not local enough” by our customers. Your annual membership would be allowed to run it’s course, but resigning would not be allowed.
Furthermore, businesses will not be allowed to monopolize ad space for more then a month at a time, to a maximum of 6 months, staggered through out the year.
These rules will help us maintain our original intent, to be local and fair to all business regardless of size.
There are many points where we feel our directory is superior that that of our competitors.
The C.I.B.C. promotes your business to a key demographic in Calgary, people that understand the benefit of local business to our economy. There are thousands of people in Calgary that make a concerted effort to support local business but may not necessarily know about you.
Our directory is exclusive to businesses like you, local and independent. We do not list international, national or even provincial wide business unless they are headquartered in Calgary.
This ensures you won’t have to compete against companies that have hundred thousands of dollars worth of advertising revenue. Your message is heard even on a meager budget.
We do not muddy our pages with what end up being unrelated Google ads or allow companies to “bump” themselves up in the category, everyone is treated equally. Our clean easy to use interface allows customers to find your information with the minimum of clicks and searching. Not having to dodge advertisements helps as well.
Icons and colour coding of advertisements and listings quickly indicate your general location and if you sell to customers or other business only.
Our home page and category pages feature spots for advertising. Very flexible, affordable and well positioned, your message is sure to reach the majority of users.
We keep our main advertising within the essential top 600 pixels of the page, guaranteeing your ads are seen without having to scroll.
We offer programs that place you into a random pool of advertisers, or a fixed placement for 1 month long periods.
Improved Google Rankings
When you become a member of the C.I.B.C., you are provided with a digital badge for your own website. By placing this on your homepage, and linking to us, it counts as a high quality link in the Google ranking system.
The more companies you have links to and the more high quality sites that have links to you, in our case through your listing, the better it is for your over all Google rankings. This should bring your site up a few steps.
So you are kept appraised of our progress as a growing group, we will publish our monthly traffic reports. You will be informed of how many unique visitors are coming to us, how many repeat visitors, and what pages they are viewing.
Our reports will show what geographical locations people are finding us from, and what terms they are using to search.
Spam Resistent Email Address Listings
There is no need to worry about additional spam because of your listing. Each and every email address on our site is scrambled so that it cannot be skimmed by email harvesting programs.