HomeBusinessLimerick businesses encouraged to apply for online presence grant

Limerick businesses encouraged to apply for online presence grant

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LIMERICK businesses are encouraged to avail of new funding to enhance their online presence.

The latest round of the Online Retail Scheme opened earlier this month and offers businesses the opportunity to get funding up to €25,000 to improve their online offering and increase online sales.

Funded by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, the scheme has a total budget of €3.4million, with each business eligible for up to €25,000.

Minister of State for Employment Affairs and Retail Business, Neale Richmond said that the scheme offers the chance for Irish businesses to become internationally recognised.

“Irish retailers have proven their resilience over the past few years, adapting to changing customer behaviour in many cases by developing an online presence. This not only serves customers in Ireland, but potential customers across the world.

 “An online presence is no longer optional for many businesses, it is a key part of any business model and the benefits are huge. While it may be an intimidating prospect for some, the Government is determined to support businesses on this journey. The Online Retail Scheme is there to help ease this transition and I am delighted that it is again open for applications,” Minister Richmond said.

Teri Smith, Manager, Retail, Consumer and Online Department, with Enterprise Ireland said that the scheme makes “a real difference” to Irish businesses.

“[It] has potential to open up new markets for the retail sector. An enhanced online presence not only boosts sales in the short-term, it also brings longer-term benefits, allowing retailers to better use data to understand customer needs and manage customer relationships,” she said.

The scheme is open to Irish businesses who have ten or more full-time employees, and already have an online presence such as an online shop or social media page.

For smaller retailers with less than ten employees, looking to develop their online presence, the Local Enterprise Offices offer the Trading Online Voucher scheme (TOVS).

This scheme provides businesses with a voucher for €2,500 to help them to develop their e-commerce capabilities and includes training in digital marketing and social media.

 The Online Retail Scheme is open for applications all through April, and closes on 3 May.

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