Digital Main Street launches across Ontario to help small businesses adopt digital practices


Just under two years after launching in Toronto, Digital Main Street, an online program targeting main street businesses, has launched across Ontario.

Digital Main Street will expand across the province with the support of the Ontario Business Improvement Area Association (OBIAA) and the province of Ontario. The OBIAA said that as of today, Digital Main Street will be live and available through OBIAA to Ontario’s “main street” businesses.

In Ontario, Digital Main Street will help small businesses improve how they use digital tools, and help them adopt technologies like ecommerce and social media platforms. Other Digital Main Street services that will be available include digital training, local service squads, and grants of up to $2,500 to help businesses adopt digital technology.

“Small main street businesses are the heart of our communities, and we are committed to ensuring that they continue to flourish.”

“Today’s announcement marks the start of an important program for Ontario’s small businesses and our communities,” said Kay Matthews, executive director of OBIAA. “Small main street businesses are the heart of our communities, and we are committed to ensuring that they continue to flourish. Being digital is now a vital part of business success and we are passionate about ensuring that small businesses get the support they need.”

The OBIAA said small businesses from across Ontario can register online and take the Digital Main Street Assessment to determine their digital practices so far and gain advice on where to focus for improvement.

“We are excited to see that Digital Main Street will be extended across Ontario,” said John Kiru, executive director of the Toronto Business Improvement Area Association. “Our partnership with OBIAA has a long successful history, and we’re delighted to continue to work with together on this important initiative, thanks to the support of the Province of Ontario.”

In September 2016, the City of Toronto launched the Digital Main Street Lab, a retail tech incubator that focuses on launching retail tech companies that can work with main street businesses in Toronto.

Disclosure: Digital Main Street is BetaKit’s Retail Times newsletter partner.