Boone EDC’s Digital UPgrade Program

The Boone EDC Digital Upgrade Program is an innovative initiative poised to revolutionize the way local enterprises engage with their customers and operate behind the scenes. It is an opportunity to help these businesses in a transformative journey.

Empowering Growth: This program is designed to empower for-profit small businesses by revamping both customer-facing and internal functions.

1:1 Matching Grant: Selected businesses receive a 1:1 matching grant, encouraging investment and commitment from each participant.

Expert Partnership: Facilitated by the Boone EDC in collaboration with SB Code Works, experts in digital design and implementation.

Tailored Strategies: Businesses undergo a comprehensive digital audit to identify strengths, weaknesses, and actionable goals to amplify their digital presence. Strategies may include e-commerce integration, enhanced customer experience, and operational efficiency.

Program Process & Goals

  • Conduct thorough digital audits to understand existing online footprints.
  • Pinpoint 1-2 strategic goals per business, be it operational efficiency, robust marketing, e-commerce integration, or improved customer experiences.
  • Empower businesses with effective digital strategies, enabling them to secure larger contracts and streamline operations.

2024 Timeline

  • February 27: Applications Open
  • March 29: Applications Close
  • April 2-29: Review Process
  • May 1-December 20: Grants Awarded + Program Execution
  • December 23: Program Evaluation + Debriefing

2023 Program Highlights

Boone County witnessed the emergence of innovation as four dynamic local businesses took the helm of digital transformation through our matching grant program. Those pioneers were:

The digital strategies identified by these small businesses included:

  • Launching user-friendly websites to boost their brand and reach.
  • Improving Square online ordering for smoother transactions.
  • Incorporating delivery options to meet customer needs.
  • Simplifying online documentation for seamless interaction.
  • Integrating gift cards to enhance customer loyalty and revenue.

Boone EDC’s Commitment

Boone EDC’s commitment to digital inclusion is profound. Selected as one of five counties to receive grants from the Duke Energy Foundation and Purdue Center for Regional Development in 2021, it marked the beginning of a transformative strategy. Our vision of digital inclusion goes beyond broadband access—it’s a holistic approach addressing affordability, device accessibility, and digital literacy. This program isn’t just about improving small business digital storefronts; it’s about creating a foundation for a digitally inclusive ecosystem, a crucial step towards enhancing Boone County’s economic vitality and community essence. Your partnership in this endeavor isn’t just an investment; it’s a commitment to shaping a brighter digital future for all in Boone County.

Want to sponsor our digital upgrade program? Email Claire Gelanis

Meet Our Partners 

Our Digital Vendor

Funding Partners