Leveraging The Canada Digital Adoption Program For Business Success: A Guide For SMEs

If you run a small or medium-sized business in Canada, the Government of Canada may have just answered your prayers. With the new Canada Digital Adoption Program, qualified businesses are now able to access the Grow Your Business Online Grant or Boost Your Business Technology Grant. These could be your golden ticket to accelerate your online presence or improve your digital transformation.

What is the Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP)?

Run by the Government of Canada, the all-encompassing purpose of the Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP) is to help SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises get online and use digital technologies to increase their competitiveness. There are two grants offered under the program, which both have varying eligibility criteria and benefits.

Grow Your Business Online Grant

In a nutshell, the Grow Your Business Online grant gives you up to $2,400 to set up ecommerce and access to a network of 11,000+ ecommerce advisors. If your business is for-profit, registered or incorporated, consumer-facing, and has at least one employee other than the owner OR has had at least $30,000 in annual revenue in the most recent tax year, you’re qualified to get funding.

The catch is that you’ll need to commit to maintaining a digital adoption strategy for six months and participate in follow-up surveys, share data about your experience, and have your business name published as a grant recipient.

Once you get your grant, you’re able to use the funds to do many activities relating to developing or maintaining an ecommerce website. You might choose to improve your search engine optimization (SEO), increase your cyber security, or allocate up to 20% (as per the grant’s limitations) of the total to hardware and software.

The bad news is there are things your grant won’t be eligible for, such as being used solely for social media advertising, redesigning an existing site, paying off rent payments and debt, and more.

Boost Your Business Technology Grant

For the Boost Your Business Technology grant, you can get up to $15,000 to develop a Digital Adoption Plan, up to $100,000 in 0% interest loans to implement a plan, and up to $7,300 to hire a skilled youth to implement these technologies for you. Your business is eligible to get funding through this grant if it is Canadian-owned, is a sole proprietorship or incorporated business, is for-profit, has 1 – 499 employees, and has had at least $500,000 in annual revenue (but no more than $100M in 1 out of 3 previous tax years).

After signing the grant agreement, you’ll have direct access to a marketplace of digital advisors who are tasked to help you develop a Digital Adoption Plan (DAP) specifically for your business. Once the plan is finalized, you’ll have to submit it to the CDAP Applicant Portal before receiving your grant payment.

It’s clear that the Boost Your Business Technology grant is geared more towards a specialized sector – making digital upgrades. It also requires a more specific set of eligibility criteria, which you should keep in mind when considering the two programs. Meanwhile, the Grow Your Business Online grant takes a broader approach that supports any activities relating to enhancing your online presence.

Final Thoughts

The CDAP presents two grants with two different focuses but work together to form a robust program that works to digitize businesses across Canada.

If you’re ready to take the plunge and give your business the advantage, Begin With B offers a range of cutting-edge solutions that include web development and enhancement, as well as custom mobile app development services. We’re here to help your business thrive in the online marketplace, now and in the future. For more insights, check out our blog.