The Digital Transformation Grant by Digital Main Street

31 Aug. 21

In smaller areas of Canada, businesses do not always have the same access to resources and funds that some of the larger provinces of the country are more privy to. Thankfully, several local businesses are stepping up to the plate to offer assistance to local companies. One such company is Digital Main Street, based out of New Brunswick. The group offers their digital transformation grant for both street and e-commerce businesses.

The Digital Transformation Grant program allows businesses to apply for funding. It’s focus is to provide main street small businesses with digital assessments, online training courses for e-commerce and web design, and a one-time $3000 grant to assist businesses with implementing their digital transformation plan.

What is a Digital Transformation Grant?

The digital transformation grant as offered by Digital Main Street (DMS) is a program designed to help smaller businesses adapt to new technology available for websites and e-commerce. Through the use of the Digital Transformation Grant program, businesses are provided funding for training courses, advisory support, and funding to both brick and mortar businesses and small e-commerce sites to increase their capacity, revenue, and presence through a total digital makeover. Please note that while the program is facilitated by Digital Main Street, the grant itself is funded by the New Brunswick Association of CBDC.

What are the Objectives of the Digital Transformation Program?

  1. To assist small business owners by providing them with a comprehensive plan related to the design, development, and implementation of their new digital business platforms and transformations.
  2. To provide small businesses with the skills they need in order to design their own sites and software, execute their digital transformations through either do-it-yourself in house development, or by providing them with the digital literacy skills needed to be a smart consumer when hiring a third party developer for their site.

Eligibility Criteria

In order to apply for a Digital Transformation Grant, your business must meet the following requirements:

  1. Employ 1-25 employees.
  2. Pays their commercial property tax directly or through commercial rent.
  3. Has registered their business in New Brunswick or is incorporated.
  4. The business is open and operating at the time of application and not a startup venture.
  5. The business does not supply digital services to other business. (Web design, SEO, programming, or any similiar services.)
  6. The business is not a franchise.
  7. The business is not a not for profit chairty or organization.
  8. The business is not housed in a renting space on a temporary basis. (IE, month-to-month leasing.)
  9. The business is not run in a shared workspace style with hot desks or dedicated desks.
  10. The business is not purely online only.

In addition, your business must be owned by a New Brunswick resident who has registered their business, is at least 18 years of age or older, and a Canadian citizen or permanent resident. Additionally, you’ll need to complete the Digital Main Street Assessmenet, pass an eligbility quiz, online training, and finish developing your digital transformation plan. NBACBDC also reserves the right to determine which businesses are and are not eligibile on a case by case basis regardless of the criteria met.

Costs Covered by the Grant

There are several costs covered by the digital transformation grant. These include your digital marketing for hiring consultants, agencies, or those with experience in digital marketing. Additionally, your websites redesign, improvement, or development of a new website are covered. Graphic design software, productivity software such as LastPass, HootSuite, and Dropbox, social media software, your security software, and other software as needed by your digital transformation plan are also covered by the grant.

Costs not Covered by the Grant

In addition to the costs covered, there are some fees incurred which the grant will not cover or reimburse. Your digital training courses, both in person and online, as well as specific hardware may not be covered by the NBACBDC. Hardware deemed necessary may be covered, but this is at the NBACBDC’s discretion. In addition, Digital Main Street reserves the right to determine which costs are and aren’t covered and these lists merely represent an overall expectation outline.

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