Government Funding Program

The government of Ontario, in partnership with the Federal Government, has announced a new suite of funding programs that are designed to help small and medium-sized businesses reach more online customers.

While there are several programs in place, two of the most beneficial programs being rolled out are the Canada Digital Adoption program and the Digital Main Street program.

Canada Digital Adoption Program

The Canada Digital Adoption Program was announced during the Federal Budget Announcement on April 19th, 2021. The program was developed to help small and medium-sized businesses with two streams of support. The first is a series of micro-grants that will be provided to eligible businesses to help them offset the cost of transitioning to digital. The second is training and support for business owners to help them navigate this transition and acclimate to the changes.

Who is eligible? 

The micro-grants and training available through the Canada Digital Adoption program are intended for small and medium-sized businesses across the country. The program will provide support to 160,000 eligible businesses over four years, by allowing them to expense up to $1.5 million in capital investments covering a broad range of assets. A proposed budget of $2.6 billion has been set in place, and the benefits of the program will be made available by 2021-22.

Digital Main Street Program

The Digital Main Street program offers grants of up to $2,500 to main street small businesses within Ontario. The funds are meant to be used by businesses to improve their online and digital presence through investments in things like web development, digital marketing services, and digital marketing training. There are currently 2,000 grants available to help small businesses embark on their digital transformation.

Who is eligible? 

There are fairly strict guidelines to determine eligibility for the Digital Main Street program to ensure that the funds make it into the hands of the small business owners who need them the most. Your business must meet the following criteria:

  • A main street business in Ontario as classified by the BIA
  • Employed a minimum of 1 employee and a maximum of 99
  • Registered and incorporated in the province of Ontario
  • You pay commercial property taxes directly or indirectly through a landlord to the government
  • Your business cannot be selling digital services like SEO, programming, or web development
  • Cannot be a non-profit organization or any form of franchise
  • The business owner must be over 18 years of age and must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident
  • Have not previously received the grant
  • The Digital Transformation Plan you submit needs to score at least a 35/50
How can you apply? 

The process to apply for the digital main street program is simple and only requires you to complete three steps.

  • Online Assessment: In order to determine if your business is eligible for the grant, you will need to complete an online assessment. It only takes around 10-15 minutes to finish the assessment, and the scores from the questionnaire will help you develop your Digital Transformation Plan
  • Training: Once you have completed the first step, you will be asked to watch a training video and pass a series of quizzes at which point you will be eligible for the grant. This process is designed to be educational and easily completed by anyone who follows along with the training video.
  • Fill Out An Application: After you complete the training video and quizzes, the final step is to fill out an application form. The application is free, so even in the rare case that you are found to be ineligible, you won’t have lost anything during the process.

Want to find out which programs you’re eligible for? Contact the team at idig Marketing for more information and digital marketing solutions!

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