A free fast-track programme to help entrepreneurs sell online is being launched in Barnsley this week.
The Click e-commerce accelerator is being delivered by UK business start-up experts Enterprise Nation on behalf of Enterprising Barnsley.
The project will see 12 innovative business people with original ideas receive eight weeks of intensive support, followed by up to a year of further mentoring.
Click begins this week and its official launch is on Thursday (June 11th) at the town’s Digital Media Centre (DMC), where Click participants will be based in a shared workspace e-commerce hub for the project.
Enterprise Nation’s founder Emma Jones, who will speak at the launch, said: “We’re delighted to launch Enterprising Barnsley’s Click programme and get to work helping 12 innovators turn their original business ideas into successful online realities.”
Other guest speakers include managing director of UK SME Business at BT Danny Longbottom and successful Yorkshire entrepreneur Claire Mitchell, who founded her own company, Chillipeeps, online seven years ago.
Click is being funded by Enterprising Barnsley, a European-funded business support programme delivered by Barnsley Council to help businesses to innovate, grow and create jobs.
Tracey Johnson of Enterprising Barnsley said: “Click will offer intensive practical support and expert know-how as well as inspiration and encouragement to help these businesses fast track to success.
“We are very pleased to be working with Enterprise Nation who bring experience and enthusiasm to the project, based in the unique environment of our Digital Media Centre.
“And it is also great to welcome such inspiring speakers to our launch as Claire Mitchell, who founded her own company to market her idea for a new baby product, and Danny Longbottom of BT, who works with hundreds of companies to help them embrace technology to develop their business.”
Click is supporting business start-ups as well as established companies with new e-commerce ideas.
Julie Nugent of Flower Corner, Summer Lane, Barnsley applied to help her set up her own e-commerce business selling her products including flowers, women’s accessories and gifts online.
Julie said: “I’ve run my business through my shop and vintage fairs for nine years now and selling online is the obvious next step for me, but I wouldn’t have known how to go about it by myself, so I was so pleased to get a place on Click to get the expert help I need.”
Established company Adomast of Shafton, who supply specialist products to major players in the construction industry have also joined Click to help them launch a new online business to sell directly to new customers including smaller construction businesses and builders’ merchants.
Through Click, participants will learn how to research the market; create a website and attract visitors to browse and buy; protect intellectual property, and trade online covering legal requirements. The course will help them develop a brand and build a reputation; and get business basics in place including logistics, sales, marketing, social media and finances.
The programme includes a two-day visit to e-commerce experts and entrepreneurs in London and will help develop connections with potential suppliers and clients.
Enterprise Nation is a small business network and business support provider. The Click initiative is a pilot project for Enterprising Barnsley.
Enterprising Barnsley is supported financially by the European Union and has attracted £3,015,276 investment from the European Regional Development Fund as part of Europe’s support for the region’s economic development, through the Yorkshire and Humber ERDF Programme.