Downtown Sault Ste. Marie merchants are getting a boost to help them enhance their online presence.
On July 16, the Sault Ste. Marie Downtown Association announced it would receive $10,000 from Digital Main Street, an initiative of the Ontario government, to form a “Digital Service Squad,” which would “help local downtown businesses adopt new technologies and take training to build digital competencies.”
The squad will visit downtown businesses assessing them for digital readiness and help them qualify for Digital Transformation Grants, each worth $2,500.
“Our main focus with this new initiative is to set up main street businesses with a comprehensive online presence, including a Google My Business page with contact details and a 360-degree tour of their location, along with photos and a Google Maps location pin,” said Josh Ingram, executive director of the Sault Ste. Marie Downtown Association, in a July 17 news release.
“That way, even if companies aren’t currently tech-savvy, their digital footprint will register with tourists and locals searching online. Our ultimate goal is to see our members gain and retain a competitive edge.”
Google My Business is a service launched by internet search engine Google in 2014.
A joint program funded by Government of Ontario and delivered by the Ontario BIA Association, Digital
Main Street helps improve how small main street businesses use digital tools and techniques to become more successful.
“We are always on the lookout for initiatives that will benefit every sector of our membership – from dentists to ice cream shops and everything in between,” added Ingram.