What is Digital Start?


What is Digital Start?

Small businesses need to maximise every advantage - and implementing a digital strategy can give businesses a real edge. Digital Start is a pilot initiative from the Local Enterprise Office designed to give Local Enterprise Office funded clients* that digital edge - from optimising processes to delivering a seamless digital customer experience, the aim is to help businesses prepare and implement a plan for the adoption of digital tools and techniques across the business.

Digital Start provides support to obtain digital strategy, technical and/or advisory services for eligible businesses.  Our expert digital consultants help to develop a unique digital strategy that transforms businesses by identifying where you are on your digital business journey, developing a digital adaptation plan based on your identified need and assisting you to implement your digital plan. It is not intended to cover costs associated with website development, digital marketing, or hardware but rather areas like business process optimisation, enhancing your digital customer experience or utilising data better.

For full information on eligibility and to discover how Digital Start can give you the edge contact your Local Enterprise Office advisor today.

Who is Eligible for Digital Start? 

Eligible Businesses

Digital Start is open to businesses who:

  • Are in the Manufacturing or Internationally Traded Service sector operating in the commercial field.
  • Employ up to 10 full-time employees.   Businesses with 10 employees or more may be eligible, please contact your Local Enterprise Office advisor for more information.
  • In general start-up businesses do not avail of Digital Start, however start-ups that are trading for a minimum of 6 months and have generated revenues in excess of €30k may be considered.
  • Companies forming part of a holding group, franchise, linked companies etc. are only permitted to make one application. Multiple applications will not be considered.

Ineligible Businesses

  • Enterprise Ireland/IDA/Údarás na Gaeltachta clients
  • Domestically focused retail, personal services, professional services and construction services.
  • Are operating in the coal or steel sector.
  • Are active in the primary agricultural, fishery or aquaculture sectors.
  • Are involved in activities that Local Enterprise Offices considers as ineligible or as involving an unacceptable reputational risk. Ineligible activities include activities relating to:
    • The gambling sector, including ‘gaming’ (as defined in the Gaming and Lotteries Act 1956).
    • Adult entertainment.
    • Tobacco and tobacco related products.
    • Cannabis-based products which are not authorised as medicines.

      Ineligible Costs

      • Marketing campaign
      • Web development and/or build
      • Online Advertising implementation
      • The purchase of off the shelf software packages, licenses or subscriptions
      • The purchase of hardware
      • Photography, banner ads, and graphic developments

      Don’t meet the eligibility criteria for Digital Start? 

      Why not check out our Trading Online Voucher. The scheme offers a grant of up to €2,500 (subject to match funding) to help micro-enterprises (10 employees of less) to develop their ecommerce capability, and in turn reap the positive enterprise impacts of trading online.

      Click here to apply now for Digita