LEO Helps SMEs In Developing Digital Presence

Gemma Conway - LEO, Dian Kelly - The Chocolate Rose Factory (RusPictured at the Trading Online Voucher seminar organised by LEO Fingal are Gemma Conway (LEO), Dian Kelly (The Chocolate Rose Factory (Rush) and Noel Davidson (Entrepreneur Academy)

A recent survey carried out by Irish Domain Registry (IEDR), showed that Irish consumers spend over E9 billion online. But only 32 per cent of SME websites can take sales orders online.

The Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Fingal has secured funding from the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources to address this imbalance and help smaller businesses to sell more online. A grant of E2,500 is available to small businesses who wish to invest in growing their E-trading capabilities under the voucher scheme.

In support of this initiative the Local Enterprise Office Fingal held a “Trading Online Voucher” seminar in the Riasc Centre, Swords on 12th June to offer advice to local SMEs on how to develop their online and digital presence.

The information seminar gave 30 local business owner/managers an insight into how they can use E-Commerce and digital marketing to attract new customers and boost sales. In addition, the businesses attending the event received information on how to apply for the grant of E2,500 towards their E-Commerce and website development costs.

Head of Enterprise, Oisín Geoghegan complimented the businesses attending the seminar for taking this step towards improving their online presence. He urged other local business looking to sell online to follow their example and think strongly about applying for the Trading Online Voucher scheme. “We have seen the impact that improving your online presence can have on sales for small businesses, and the Trading Online Voucher scheme is one way for business to start the process. To date we have approved 166 Online Voucher applications totalling E356,334 and I would like to see this increase further.”

While the seminar highlighted the importance of applying for the Trading Online Voucher, it also gave an insight to the different courses and workshops available through the Local Enterprise Office Fingal, such as the six Week QQI Level 5 Certificate in Social Media & Digital Marketing and Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and WordPress one day workshops.

Fingal County Council Chief Executive Paul Reid said: “We are always striving to make Fingal a better place to do business and through LEO Fingal we actively promote and support a diverse range of enterprises who use both online and traditional sales methods. Businesses that invest in e-commerce are reaping benefits and we are keen to assist other businesses who want to go down this route.”