Applications are now open for digital training and web development initiative for SMEs (micro, small and medium-sized enterprises) in the Antrim and Newtownabbey Council area.
Businesses in the borough are once more being invited to apply for Council’s Build Your Own Website (BYOW) programme.
The skills-based initiative, now entering its third year, provides key digital training for participants, helping SMEs build professional commercial websites for their businesses.
It further includes workshops aimed at maximising the potential of a website, focusing on SEO content creation and how to use online tools to boost exposure.
At the end of the programme, each participant will have a functional website they can manage themselves, as well as knowledge on how to make the best impact online.
All of this will help them to attract new customers and encourage business growth into the future.
The Build Your Own Website programme will look at areas including site navigation, page functionality and web content, as well as delivering practical support in creating, activating and maintaining websites.
A user manual will be provided to support the participating businesses after they complete the programme which will be delivered by Ardean Marketing & Business Development and Associates on behalf of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council.
The programme, which is now open for applications, is limited to 15 participants and with demand once more expected to be high, the advice is to apply early to secure a place.
Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Councillor Paul Michael, said the BYOW programme was invaluable to local SMEs, providing professional assistance that would get their businesses noticed online.
He said: “Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council is delighted to be launching this programme for the third year running, with feedback from all former participants incredibly positive.
“The aim is to equip SMEs with sufficient digital skills so they can build and manage their own websites, helping them get to grips with technology and understand how it can help them commercially.
“If your business has previously missed out on securing similar assistance from mainstream government agencies and programmes, then the BYOW programme is for you,” said Cllr. Michael.
Laura McKnight from Legal Assist in Antrim, took part in last years’ BYOW programme and said it had greatly benefitted her business. I would never have been able to create a website by myself,” she said.
“The BYOW programme offered step-by-step guidance and left me with a professional-looking website which I’m now able to maintain myself. I would definitely recommend it to other businesses.”
Aine Wallace, a creative health practitioner at Fresh Minds Education, also took part in the 2017 programme, which she said ultimately helped her business to increase sales and find new customers.
“As a result of the website developed within the BYOW programme, we’ve also reduced the number of administrative queries that we get, as we’re now able to provide customers with the information they need at their fingertips,” she said.
“We were delighted with the patience and practical and professional service provided by the BYOW team.”
To apply for the BYOW programme visit www.antrimandnewtownabbey.gov.uk/buildyourown.
Alternatively, contact Eilish Devlin from Ardean Marketing & Business Development at: firstname.lastname@example.org or Alastair Law from the Council at: T. 028 9446 3113; E: Alastair.Law@antrimandnewtownabbey.gov.uk