Are you a small or medium-sized company in the commercial or craft sector and want to digitize your processes? Would you like to benefit from government funding, but shy away from the formal effort? Then you should get to know the funding opportunities of go-digital together with UnitedAds.

Up to € 16,500 funding

The go-digital funding program supports small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and craft businesses that want to optimize their business processes using digital solutions with 50% of the consulting and implementation costs. The maximum funding amount is € 16,500.

We take care of the formalities

UnitedAds stands by your company by providing professional advice and support for the implementation of innovative measures to set up and expand modern IT systems. UnitedAds is authorized by the BMWi and relieves your company of all formalities – from the application for funding to proof of use. In this way, your company benefits from tailor-made advice that is based on your specific needs

UnitedAds is go-digital authorized

The BMWi has authorized a number of competent consulting firms to do this. UnitedAds is one of those authorized consulting companies that support you in the search for individual solutions for your online trade, the digitization of your company, the acquisition of new customers via digital channels and the increasing need for security in digital networking.

We take care of the application for the funding, the accounting and the reporting.

Further information on funding with Go Digital

The increasing digitization of the entire day-to-day business is currently one of the most important challenges for many companies. The digital transformation affects practically all industries and often appears to small and medium-sized companies as well as craft businesses in all their facets to be difficult to control. However, consistent digitization of business processes is essential for most companies in order to maintain competitiveness.

In order to be able to hold its own in the face of increasingly fierce competition, it is essential to advance digitization in the company. In addition to product marketing, communication and the digitization of company processes, the topic of IT security must also be given high priority. With the funding program of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi for short), “go-digital”, in this context, in particular in small and medium-sized commercial enterprises (SMEs), including the skilled trades, external consulting services and the implementation of the recommended Measures promoted. A modular structure is intended to make the individual areas clearer for small companies.

Support SMEs and trades

The increasing complexity of the digitally networked economy poses great challenges for companies. In particular, the many small and medium-sized companies and craft businesses – in contrast to the larger companies – only have fewer financial, organizational and human resources. The aim of the funding program is therefore to support SMEs and the skilled trades in the development and implementation of holistic IT business concepts and the necessary organizational measures so that they can keep up with technological and social developments in the areas of increasing security requirements with increasing digital networking, online sales and the growing digitization of business processes can keep pace.

This makes an effective contribution to the implementation of the federal government’s digital agenda, accompanying and strengthening SMEs both as ICT providers and consumers as comprehensively as possible in the transition to the digital economy. This should ultimately lead to the preservation and, if necessary, the creation of jobs.

Accompany medium-sized businesses into the digital future

The digital transformation affects all industries and business areas. In order to be able to hold its own in the long term, it is important to firmly establish digitization across all business areas in the company. This poses a major challenge for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and the skilled trades in particular. As a rule, there is a lack of the necessary capacities to carry out relevant activities in a targeted, successful and timely manner.

This is where the new go-digital funding program of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) comes in. For consultants authorized by go-digital, SMEs and trades support them from the analysis to the implementation of specific measures.

Practical external consulting and implementation services on technological and social developments in the field of e-commerce, the digitization of everyday business and the increasing need for security in digital networking support medium-sized companies on their way to the digital future. Go-digital offers companies unbureaucratic financial support, because the authorized consulting companies handle the entire administrative project handling, from application to reporting.

“Digital market development” module

Online trading continues to expand. The changed information and purchasing behavior of business and private customers is accompanied by a high level of market transparency and dynamism. The customer uses the new information technology to find out about products and services as well as prices on the Internet and, if necessary, to order online. However, a high percentage of small companies in particular do not yet have their own website.

Medium-sized companies must not lose touch with national and international competitors here. SMEs and the skilled trades need to be present on the Internet in order to present their services and products and, if necessary, to market them via their own online shops or external platforms. Having your own website makes it easier to win new customers, to motivate existing customers to buy again and to bind them to your own company in the long term. This is where the “Digital Market Development” module comes in.

The aim of this module is to provide advice on the various aspects of professional online marketing. With the support of an external consultant, a professional Internet presence and, if necessary, a separate web shop should be set up in order to increase sales and to maintain and increase the national and international competitiveness of the beneficiary company in the long term.

In addition to developing a company-specific online marketing strategy, the measures developed there are to be implemented by a consultant. This can include, for example, the construction or optimization of a professional, legally compliant website and, if it makes sense, an own online shop or the use of external auction, sales or service platforms, as well as social media tools, website monitoring and content marketing. The increasing importance of the use of mobile devices should be taken into account. Customer needs such as user friendliness, current payment methods and customer service as well as the legal requirements for data protection and information security in the company must be taken into account. Online marketing often also includes the business processes subordinate to the web shop, such as the provision of goods and payment procedures. This often creates a link with the subsequent module.

“IT security” module

With the increasing use of information and communication technologies in business value creation, the need for trustworthy ICT infrastructure increases. Despite increasing damage from hacker attacks on production processes, data loss or the failure of the IT infrastructure, a large number of SMEs do not have sufficient technical and organizational security measures. This is where the “IT security” module comes in.

The subject of funding in this module is qualified advice to SMEs and the skilled trades to improve their IT security level. In the course of advising SMEs in this module, the generally recognized protection goals such as confidentiality, integrity, availability, authenticity and liability are to be integrated into operational procedures and business processes.

This is done after a risk and security analysis (evaluation of threats and possible weak points) of the existing or newly planned operational ICT infrastructure for digital business processes (e.g. in the form of an audit suitable for SMEs). The support of the beneficiary company in the implementation of the necessary measures for the initiation / optimization of IT security processes, which aims to set up an operational IT security management system (ISMS), is promoted within the framework of the program. The beneficiary company is to be supported in establishing an IT security architecture that is tailored to itself and its purposes and which takes into account all company issues.

These measures should be holistic and sustainable for the company and take into account existing standards from the perspective of the user, from the perspective of business processes and technology in a form that is appropriate for SMEs. The IT security measures are intended exclusively to avoid future damage, to include appropriate measures in strategic planning to prevent economic damage and to minimize risks from cybercrime. After completion of the funded project, the beneficiary companies should be able to operate the fundamentally required IT security measures independently in the future.

“Digitized Business Processes” module

Analog business processes such as paper-based receipts or manual data entry are very resource-intensive, often confusing and sometimes difficult to understand and reproduce, both in dealing with partners or customers and in internal business processes. It is also worthwhile for SMEs and the skilled trades to design these processes at least partially electronically or even to digitize them in their entirety. Electronic processes usually optimize the business processes in the company and help to make them service and customer-friendly as well as efficient and secure.

Modern Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems help, for example, to avoid unnecessary work steps in procurement and purchasing and to reduce the effort for internal administration. There are also various ordering options in online shops, as well as digital solutions for shipping, returns and payment management, to ensure the successful sale of products on the Internet. So accelerates z. B. the electronic invoice processing of payment transactions with customers. And customer relationship management (CRM) systems play an important role in customer acquisition and retention, especially in marketing, sales and service.

Integrated, ICT-supported business process management is therefore becoming increasingly important so that medium-sized companies do not lose touch with e-business and can successfully participate in national and international competition.

German SMEs still have a lot of catching up to do when it comes to using digitized business processes. Ultimately, this should be taken up in the “Digitized Business Processes” module of the same name.

How is it funded?

Beneficiary companies

Legally independent commercial or skilled trades companies can, as beneficiaries, benefit from advisory services if they meet the following requirements:

● less than 100 employees
● Previous year’s sales or balance sheet total of a maximum of EUR 20 million
● Permanent establishment or branch in Germany
● Eligibility according to the de minimis regulation

How big is the promotion?

Consulting services are funded with a funding rate of 50 percent to a maximum daily consultancy rate of 1,100 euros (excluding VAT). The beneficiary SME only bears its own share. The funding amount is a maximum of 30 consulting days in a period of up to 6 months.

How big is the promotion?

Consulting services are funded with a funding rate of 50 percent to a maximum daily consultancy rate of 1,100 euros (excluding VAT). The beneficiary SME only bears its own share. The funding amount is a maximum of 30 consulting days in a period of up to 6 months.

Potential analysis and creation of a rough implementation concept

The consulting service consists of a “potential analysis and creation of a rough implementation concept” to be carried out as well as a possible additional “specification and implementation of the implementation concept”. If the consulting firm already knows the company to be advised and the planned funding project, a realization concept and / or project management can be carried out without a potential analysis being carried out beforehand.

Scope of the potential analysis and the implementation concept

a) Technical initial discussion to analyze the respective existing IT security level / status of digital market development / degree of digitization of business processes including a brief description of the current status.

b) Development of a strengths and weaknesses profile with regard to the IT-technical / IT-technological and organizational current state as well as the IT security level of the beneficiary company in the subject area of each module. This includes the analysis of the technical / functional performance as well as the potential of software / hardware. Any internal company guidelines and contractual obligations on the topics of the modules should also be assessed. The economic situation of the company must be included in the analysis and the market situation must be taken into account.

c) Preliminary examination of the necessary technical and organizational level of the recommended measures, taking into account the importance of the company’s internal information on the market.

d) Creation of a rough implementation concept based on the above information and taking into account the necessary economic aspects. The concept should include an estimate of the expected time required and the costs for its implementation. The information on costs should be broken down into the main types of costs. The qualitative and quantitative assessment of the cost / benefit ratio of the concept is to be established using a suitable research method in an industry comparison.

e) If necessary, selection and commissioning of a suitable, expert third party.

f) Qualitative and quantitative assessment of the success of the overall implementation of the realization concept.