What is the Grow Your Business Online program?
The Grow Your Business Online grant will help small businesses across Alberta take advantage of e-commerce opportunities.
Eligible businesses will receive a micro-grant of up to $2,400 to help with the costs related to adopting digital technologies. Grants will be available through Business Link. They will also support a network of e-commerce advisors who will advise and help small businesses adopt e-commerce.
The grant is administered by Business Link and is not administered by Digital Main Street.
The objectives of the Grow Your Business Online program are to:
Provide small business owners with a micro-grant of $2,400 to help with costs related to adopting e-commerce.
Provide small business owners with access to a network of eCommerce advisors where they can receive support and guidance.
Digital Main Street Partners
Applications can only be submitted by a small business that meets all of the following criteria:
Please note that all eligible costs must show a direct tie in to implementing a new e-commerce store in your proposed spending plan. Anything that is not tied to directly selling products or services online, will not be an eligible expense.
Please note that any transactions deemed to be non-arms length between a successful grant recipient and their chosen service provider will be ineligible.
A non arms length transaction is defined as a transaction made between related parties as described in Section 251 of the Income Tax Act.
- Costs related to the implementation or improvement of a digital e-commerce plan (e.g. online reservation/booking tools, online ordering systems, electronic payments)
- E-commerce software including:
- Software to track and manage product inventory, as well as fulfill and ship orders,
- Software for product databases
- Software to track sales, market to customers, offer discounts, maintain a loyalty programs
- Software to simplify marketing
- Cyber Security software or certifications
- Hardware and accompanying software up to 20% of total grant amount
- Examples of limited coverage for software, would be any software that is bought with the equipment that is required to support an e-commerce strategy. For instance, if a small business buys a new e-commerce integrated point of sale (POS) system that costs $1,300 (including software) as a part of their $2400 plan, CDAP will reimburse 20% of the grant (in this case $480) for hardware.
- Costs related to website search optimization.
- Note: plan cannot be strictly search optimization, it needs to be tied to overall e-commerce implementation plan, and not a standalone item.
- Costs related to the installation of an e-commerce platform (including subscription fees/costs)
- Costs of back-office solutions to support an e-commerce strategy
- Costs of social media advertising
- Note: plan cannot be strictly social media advertising, it needs to be tied to overall e-commerce implementation plan, and not a standalone item.
- Costs related to the creation of customer databases
- Hiring a consultant/agency to execute Digital Marketing initiatives related to your e-commerce store
- Development of new e-commerce website
- Upgrading existing e-commerce site for added functionality (i.e., new plugins, or features)
- Please note redesign of an existing site is not eligible
- Software required to implement e-commerce solution
- Note: all software must be directly tied to the selling of goods and services online, and you will need to clearly outline this in your submitted plan.
- Digital Main Street and Business Link reserves the right to determine what is eligible/ineligible on an as needed basis. These are merely an outline and represent best practices.