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The DSS is focused on providing 1-on-1 FREE local assistance for digital services to small businesses in any region of Alberta. It will include training and advisory support towards digital strategy development, Google My Business assistance, social media posts, taking awesome pictures for your businesses, and more. The DSS will be available through local business support providers.
Apply for the Digital Economy Program here. You will be directed to register for an account and will be connected with your local Digital Service Squad.
Your Digital Service Squad will help your business with digital transformation to improve your ability to reach new customers online, build a loyal community, and increase your sales.
Digital transformation is just the beginning. Watch your business grow online with new customers. Don’t forget to come back and share your story to inspire other Albertan small business owners just getting started.
The DSS is your community’s team of youth and recent graduates who are trained to deliver personalized, 1-on-1 assistance to small businesses. They will help you navigate new digital tools and optimize their use to reach potential customers in existing and new markets. Small businesses will meet with these trained specialists at no cost. The Squads will help the business complete an online assessment, and then introduce them to online training modules to build their digital knowledge and skills. This 1-on-1 Squad assistance includes support for basic website set-up, Google My Business profiles, 360º photos, creation, or enhancement of social media presence, and much more.
To be eligible to be a part of the Digital Economy Program, businesses must fit the following criteria: 1. Home-based or commercial businesses, 2. Small businesses registered in Alberta (exceptions apply for some Indigenous businesses), and 3. Less than 50 employees (this includes self-employed business owners with no employees) Non-profits, charitable trusts and franchises are not considered eligible businesses under this program.
There is no cost to eligible businesses to take part in the program. However, there is a requirement for participating businesses to commit time to the program. The amount of time you will be required to commit to this program is dependent on what services you are utilizing. Your active involvement is essential for your success. This program is funded by the Government of Alberta.
The amount of time you will be required to commit to this program is dependent on what services you are utilizing. Your active involvement is essential for your success. On an average business spend 5-12 hours with squad members.
Once your application has been received, the team will assess eligibility and a squad member will contact you shortly afterwards.
Once your business is selected for the DSS Program, you will be assigned to a squad member. You can identify suitable times to work with the assigned squad member, who can also help with the digital assessment process to determine specific needs and next steps in the process.
Time to complete the program will be dependent on several factors unique to your situation. For DSS services, that timeline will be determined by your squad.
Yes, eligible Alberta-based businesses can apply for either or both programs in no particular order.
Yes. For basic sites without e-commerce functions, the DSS may be able to help you build one.
A digital assessment is an audit of what digital tools your business is (or is not) using and how you’re using them. We will use this assessment to determine the next steps for your digital transformation to best support your business.
Most businesses receive between 5 and 12 hours of support from their DSS member.
We expect participating businesses to work with their assigned squad member to complete the program. After that, it’s important you have a plan in place to continue the development. Contact Business Link directly to discuss other services and support that may be available.
The Digital Service Squad will work directly with you to determine how best to support your success to kickstart the digital activity. You can book the time that works for you and in fact it is advisable to book time with your assigned squad member over a period of 8-12 weeks to allow you time to build on the initiative.
Increase your digital presence, grow your sales, and reach new customers online. Get started with a Digital Service Squad today.