About the Canada Digital Adoption Program

Do you own a small or medium-sized business in Canada? The Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP) offers two grants that will help you get online and use technology to build your business:

  • The Grow Your Business Online grant gives you up to $2,400 to set up e-commerce and grow your sales online.
  • The Boost Your Business Technology grant gives you up to $15,000 to get advice on the technologies that can propel your business forward.

On this page

Is the Grow Your Business Online grant right for you?

Apply for the Grow Your Business Online grant and get up to $2,400 to help you reach your customers where they are. A local service provider will manage your application and connect you with an
e-commerce advisor.

Apply now

Application process

You can apply in 3 easy steps!

  • Step 1: Read the eligibility criteria to make sure the program is right for you.
  • Step 2: Connect with your local service provider.
  • Step 3: Apply for the grant with help from your service provider.

Eligibility

Are you eligible?

Use the CDAP grant assessment tool to see if your business qualifies.

You can get funding through CDAP if your business:

  • is a for-profit business (including for-profit social enterprises and co-operatives)
  • is registered or incorporated
  • is consumer-facing and provides in-person services to consumers
  • has at least one employee (other than the owner) OR had at least $30,000 in annual revenue in the most recent tax year 
  • commits to maintaining a digital adoption strategy for six months
  • agrees to participate in follow-up surveys, share data about the experience, and have its name published as a grant recipient

Your business is not eligible if it is:

  • a corporate chain, franchise or registered charity
  • a representative of a multi-level marketing company
  • a real estate brokerage
  • a business that is engaged in online reselling or drop-shipping reliant on third-party suppliers
  • a wholesale or distribution business and manufacturer (unless you sell directly to consumers)

Eligible and ineligible costs

How can you use your grant?

  • To develop a new e-commerce website or add functionality to your existing site (e.g. online reservation/booking tools, online ordering systems, electronic payments)
    • Redesign of an existing site is not eligible
  • To install an e-commerce platform (including subscription fees/costs)
  • To hire a consultant to develop digital marketing for your e-commerce store
  • To use website search optimization and social media advertising
    • Your grant cannot be used solely for website search optimization or social media advertising; such uses must be tied to an overall e-commerce implementation plan and not a standalone item
  • To track and manage inventory and sales, market to customers, offer discounts, maintain a loyalty program, or increase cyber security using e-commerce software
  • To pay up to 20% of the total cost of hardware and software

Eligible costs must be directly tied to the sale of goods and services online.

Ineligible costs:
  • Internet connectivity
  • Shipping of goods purchased through the e-commerce platform
  • Purchases made prior to grant approval
  • Renewal of digital services such as domain names or software subscriptions (including existing e-commerce subscriptions)
  • Signage and printing
  • Logo redesign and rebranding
  • Owner's salary or current employee salary for executing the project
  • Purchase of land, buildings or vehicles
  • Intangible assets such as goodwill, whether capitalized or expensed
  • Depreciation or amortization expenses
  • Interest on invested capital, bonds or debentures
  • Bond discount
  • Monthly mortgage, loan and/or rent payments
  • Refinancing of an existing debt
  • Losses on investments, bad debts and any other debts
  • Fines or penalties
  • Litigation
  • Fees for administrators, including payments to any member or officer of the business’s board of directors
  • Opportunity costs
  • Hospitality and entertainment costs
  • Franchise fees and/or franchise licence costs
  • Lobbyist fees
  • New capital expenditures
  • Consulting fees for submission of CDAP application or any costs not related to the acquisition or set-up of technology solutions

E-commerce advisors

Want to be an e-commerce advisor?

As an advisor, you will help local small businesses assess their digital needs and develop their
e-commerce strategy. You will receive training to help you:

  • understand CDAP grants
  • learn the capabilities of e-commerce solutions
  • understand the basics of cyber security

You can apply if you:

  • have graduated from high school and are planning on pursuing a post-secondary education
  • are currently pursuing post-secondary education
  • have recently graduated from a post-secondary institution

Is the Boost Your Business Technology grant right for you?

The Boost Your Business Technology grant gives you up to $15,000 to get advice and up to $100,000 in interest free loans from the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) to implement the technologies that can propel your business forward.

You’ll have access to an expert digital advisor who will help you develop a plan tailored to your business needs.

Apply now

Application
 

Are you eligible?

Use the CDAP grant assessment tool to see if your business qualifies.

You can apply in 4 easy steps!

  • Step 1: Create your account.
  • Step 2: Confirm your eligibility.
  • Step 3: Work with a digital advisor to develop your digital adoption plan.
  • Step 4: Submit your digital adoption plan to receive your grant payment.

Consult the program guide for terms and conditions.

Digital Needs Assessment (DNA)

How can you get started?

Complete a short questionnaire that will help you assess your current use of technology. Your DNA report will help identify your business needs.

Fast-track

What if you already have a digital adoption plan?

You could still benefit from CDAP! Use our fast-track option to get a loan directly from the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) or a funded work placement to help implement your plan.

You may be eligible if you have a plan, created within the last 24 months, from one of the programs below:

BDC loan

How will you pay for new technology?

If you're ready to move forward on your digital adoption plan but you don’t have the necessary cashflow, BDC can help with a 0% interest loan of up to $100,000.

Eligibility

You're eligible if you have completed a digital adoption plan:

  • as part of CDAP and have received your grant OR
  • under another recognized digital adoption program and submitted it to CDAP

Loan amounts

  • Business revenues of $500,000 to $5 million: loans between $25,000 and $50,000
  • Business revenues over $5 million: loans between $25,000 and $100,000

Terms

  • The loan has a 5-year term with 12-month capital postponement (total of 6 years).
  • There are no fees.
  • You have 1 year from the completion of your approved plan to make a loan request.
  • You must meet BDC credit worthiness requirements.

Funded work placement

Need help with your plan?

  • You can hire talented students or recent graduates to help your business achieve its digital adoption goals.
  • You will receive a wage subsidy of up to $7,300 to hire talent through a work placement.

Eligibility

You're eligible if you have completed a digital adoption plan:

  • as part of CDAP and have received your grant OR
  • under another recognized digital adoption program and submitted it to CDAP

Learn how to digitally transform your business

These articles and blog posts from BDC will help you get a head start on adopting new digital tools.

Digital marketing
E-commerce
Improving operations efficiency (and profitability) through digital investments
Investing in digital and technology to generate business and improve productivity

Contact information

Commitment to inclusion

The Canada Digital Adoption Program upholds Innovation Canada's commitment to providing inclusive programs and cultivating a workplace that is both diverse and inclusive so that we can best support the businesses we serve.

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