What Is The Online Trading Voucher?
The Online Trading Voucher is Irish Government funding. This funding is offered through local Enterprise Offices. The funding is to invest in developing their eCommerce capability, of up to €2,500.
The Trading Online Grant (TOV) Scheme assists small businesses to trade online. Eligible businesses can apply for a voucher to invest in developing their eCommerce capability, of up to €2,500.
The below information is taken from The Fingal Local Enterprise Office Online Trading Voucher page.
Online Trading Voucher Scheme Overview
The Trading Online Grant (TOV) Scheme assists small businesses to trade online. Eligible businesses can apply for a voucher to invest in developing their eCommerce capability, of up to €5,000
The funding scheme is active on through the following dates:
Start date: 7th April 2020
End Date: 30th September 2020
Note – Business pays 50% – funding is up to 50%
Businesses that have previously availed of the Trading Online Grant Scheme, are still eligible.
Eligibility Criteria for funding
- Voucher approval must be gained prior to incurring any expense
- Own labour is not an eligible expense
- Third party costs only will be considered
- All third party/supplier invoices must contain proper business details (e.g. Tax and Business Registration details).
- no more than 10 employees;
- less than €2m in turnover;
- be trading for at least 6 months and
- Commercial semi-state companies
- Trade associations
- Company representation bodies such as Chambers of Commerce
- “Not for profit” and social entrepreneurship applicants unless they operate in a commercial domain
- Professional services specialising in IT type services who are already capable of trading online using existing in-house systems
- Conferences and Seminars
- Projects which are contrary to public policy
- Duplication of support for projects which would be eligible for assistance from other State Agencies of EU funded Operational Programmes
- Projects deemed to be capable of proceeding in any event without scheme assistance i.e. deadweight
- Projects essentially comprising importation and distribution
What the Online Trading Vouchers can be used for
- IT consultation
- Development or upgrade of an e-commerce website
- Implementing online payments or booking systems
- Purchase of internet related software
- Purchase of online advertising (this purchase cannot make up any more than 30% of approved Voucher costs and can only be drawn down in one payment phase)
- Developing an app (or multiplatform webpages)
- Implementing a digital marketing strategy i.e. Social media marketing
- Consultation with ICT experts for early-stage adopters of online strategy
- Training/skills development specifically to establish and manage an online trading activity
What the vouchers cannot be used for
- Development of brochure websites
- Purchase of non-internet related software
- Anything other than online trading related activity
Businesses that participated in the scheme reported that, on average they saw their sales increase by 20%, with an 80% jump in sales leads and 3 in 5 exporting for the first time.
For many businesses, the question is not whether to trade online, it’s how to start. At least 2,000 small businesses have found answers to that question and a helping hand to take that step through the TOV Scheme. Some of them are your competitors.