Digital Main Street


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Digital Main Street offers programs and services to help small businesses improve their digital literacy and help them thrive in the face of new challenges. The program was initially built around an online learning platform, structured training programs, and Digital Service Squads*, teams of highly trained recent graduates who help main street businesses grow and manage their business through the adoption of digital tools and technology.

*Most municipalities in Halton region currently have a Digital Service Squad (DSS) available to help main street businesses in Business Improvement Area (BIA) catchment areas. If your business is a member of a BIA, please contact them for information on how the DSS can help you with your website and digital marketing efforts.



Digital Main Street (DMS), in partnership with FedDev Ontario and the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade, announced its Future Proof Program on August 19, 2020.

With Future Proof, DMS aims to expand their support and create lasting change for small businesses across Ontario. The Future Proof program is designed to have regions explore what is possible when we work together. It offers three streams of support:

“Helping Main Street get back on its feet starts with supporting local small businesses to grow and adapt to today’s world. The Future Proof program will provide the support small businesses need to transform their operations to meet the challenges of today and opportunities of tomorrow.”

— The Honourable Prabmeet Sarkaria, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction.

DMS Community Collaboration


Community Collaboration Projects will take real-time challenges being faced by our main street businesses and pilot test workable solutions. The project is focused on bringing together community members to collaboratively identify and solve local main street challenges.

Haltech RIC hosted a Community Mixer and two workshops to identify and collaborate on solving some of the tough challenges facing our local main streets. Funding from $5,000 to $25,000 was available to pilot projects that address these challenges.

In November, 2020, Haltech and the Halton Small Business Centre announced their first Community Collaboration Projects as part of the Digital Main Street Future Proof Program. See projects below ⬇️

DMS Lab Pilot Projects


“COVID-19 has pushed many small businesses to the brink. They need new ways to engage with their customer base. The goal of our Future Proof program is to enhance the options available to Ontario small businesses and enable them to adapt in new ways to help them flourish.”

— John Kiru, Executive Director of the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas

The Digital Main Street Lab leverages relationships between technology companies and communities to pilot innovations that encourage transformational change along main street. Our regional delivery partner for the Digital Main Street Future Proof Program: Communitech is an incubator based in Waterloo, Ontario. After a rigorous application review process, they selected four DMS Lab projects for support across southwest Ontario, including Haltech client:

DMS Transformation Teams


If your small business already has a website, but you’re struggling to figure out how to generate business leads or how to navigate all the social media options available to you, a complimentary Transformation Team consultation might be for you.

Transformation Teams offer individual main street businesses an opportunity to work with an interdisciplinary team of recent graduates and highly trained students. Transformation teams offer expertise in web design, digital marketing, graphic design, user experience/user interaction (UX/UI) and copywriting.

Examples of eligible businesses that have recently worked with a Transformation Team are: