InnovateBC offers business owners COVID-19 recovery programming including digital skills hiring grants, no-cost business coaching, access to local connections and more.

InnovateBC offers business owners COVID-19 recovery programming including digital skills hiring grants, no-cost business coaching, access to local connections and more.

Innovate BC offers boost to those growing their business online

COVID recovery programming includes digital skills hiring grants, no-cost business coaching and more

Need help getting your business online? So does Susan. She’d been successfully running her retail shop for six years – and then COVID-19 hit.

Innovate BC enabled Susan with:

  • Subsidized digital marketing role
  • Support from a local business coach to build out an action plan
  • Access to no-fee educational content and resources

Susan is part of the Shíshál Nation and owns a store in Ch’atlich (Sechelt) that sells locally made products like jewellery, clothing and artwork. She’s built a profitable business from local tourism. But she’s struggling to make ends meet. Her business took a real hit with COVID-related non-essential travel bans.

Susan has worked to keep her business afloat with some government support and a sprinkling of tourists in late summer. She needs a long-term solution for the loss of foot traffic and loss of suppliers.

What she really needs are new customers and a way to find them cost-effectively. She also needs to figure out a way to get her products to buyers without eating too much into her profits.

She knows she needs to digitize her business, get online. She just doesn’t know where to start, what’s most important, what tools she needs, what skills… the list goes on. And, she doesn’t really have much extra capital. She’s been eating away at her savings over the last few months. She’s feeling overwhelmed and exhausted.

Susan googled loans, grants and subsidies for BC businesses. Innovate BC came up. They offer COVID-19 recovery programming to business owners in the form of digital skills hiring grants, no-cost business coaching and even access to local connections. Plus, it looks like Innovate BC’s programs are focused on regional communities like hers and give special consideration for underrepresented groups.

Susan was able to get

  • 4-month digital marketing contract subsidized
  • Help from a local business coach to build out an action plan
  • Access to complimentary content and resources…

Plus, Susan got connected to other local business owners. She’s built a strong peer support network.

Six months later Susan has her website up and running, an online store, inbound requests from suppliers, and even asks for her product from markets outside of North America. She’s way ahead of where she was a few months ago, and best of all she has recovered most of her sales revenue. Looks like she’ll also avoid the seasonal dips of off-peak season.

Find out more at innovatebc.ca

Business

 

With help from InnovateBC, Susan has her website up and running, an online store and has recovered most of her sales revenue lost when COVID-related restrictions slowed traveller visits to her store.

With help from InnovateBC, Susan has her website up and running, an online store and has recovered most of her sales revenue lost when COVID-related restrictions slowed traveller visits to her store.

Just Posted

In a feature article published April 10, 2021 in The Times of London, ‘headlined British Columbia has what it takes to rival Napa Valley,’ the valley is praised extensively for its natural beauty and wine. (File photo)
From the U.K. with love: Okanagan wine, scenery receives international praise

The Times of London newspaper recently featured the valley in a wine and travel piece

The currently vacant lot on Main Street where a Dairy Queen, retail and residential spaces have been approved to go into. (Town of Oliver)
Main Street in Oliver is getting a Dairy Queen and residential units

Oliver council gave its approval to fill the empty lot with DQ and residential units

A dumpster was on fire behind a residential complex in downtown Penticton Tuesday afternoon. (Brennan Phillips Western News)
Dumpster fire extinguished in downtown Penticton

There has been a string of dumpster fires lately

FILE — In this March 31, 2021 file photo, a nurse fills a syringe with a dose of the Johnson & Johnson’s one-dose COVID-19 vaccine at the Vaxmobile, at the Uniondale Hempstead Senior Center, in Uniondale, N.Y. The U.S. is recommending a “pause” in administration of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to investigate reports of potentially dangerous blood clots. In a joint statement Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration said it was investigating clots in six women in the days after vaccination, in combination with reduced platelet counts. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)
72 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health

This brings the total number of cases in the region to 9,666 since the pandemic began

Fire rips through shop in small South Okanagan town

The building was destroyed despite community efforts to fight the fire

Restaurant patrons enjoy the weather on a patio in Vancouver, B.C., Monday, April 5, 2021. The province has restricted indoor dining at all restaurants in B.C. due to a spike in COVID-19 numbers. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 indoor dining, drinking ban extending into May

Restaurant association says patio rules to be clarified

Marylou Jensen. (Contributed)
Kelowna RCMP searching for missing senior

Marylou Jensen left her Grenfell Road home on foot at 5 p.m.

Skogie’s Express Tunnel Wash on Anderson Way in Vernon. (Submitted photo)
Lawsuit dismissed after vehicle damaged while inside Okanagan car wash

Civil Resolution Tribunal dismisses driver’s claim following a collision inside Skogie’s car wash in Vernon

The future of the Eagle Pass Lookout cabin is being discussed. (File photo)
Options presented for future of former Eagle Pass fire lookout in Shuswap

Stakeholders met in 2020 to discuss the restoration, or possible removal of the cabin

(Mayor Cindy Fortin - Peachland)
Peachland mayor declines early vaccination offer

Mayor Cindy Fortin said she wants seniors, immunocompromised individuals to get the shot first

B.C. Premier John Horgan speaks at the B.C. legislature. (B.C. government)
Tougher COVID-19 restrictions in B.C., including travel, still ‘on the table’: Horgan

John Horgan says travel restrictions will be discussed Wednesday by the provincial cabinet

Conservation officers caught three men over fishing bull trout in Kinbasket Lake. (Facebook)
B.C. men fined $1.7K for overfishing near Revelstoke, Golden

The seized fish were donated to the Golden Food Bank

NorKam secondary student Karis Wilson in the outfit that got her sent home from school on Feb. 23, 2021. (Kamloops This Week photo)
Clothing that ‘detracts from learning process’ removed from SD73 student dress code

Policy change underway after student in knee-length dress, long-sleeve turtleneck sent home

Protesters occupied a road leading to Fairy Creek Watershed near Port Renfrew. (Submitted photo)
B.C. First Nation says logging activist interference not welcome at Fairy Creek

Vancouver Island’s Pacheedaht concerned about increasing polarization over forestry activities

Most Read