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USU Extension empowers rural small businesses with E-Commerce Accelerator program

By Staff | Jan 24, 2024

Utah State University Extension’s Rural Online Initiative (ROI) recently announced the launch of the E-Commerce Accelerator (ECA) program designed to empower small businesses in rural Utah

In a bid to uplift small businesses in rural Utah, Utah State University Extension’s Rural Online Initiative (ROI) proudly introduces the E-Commerce Accelerator (ECA) program. This fully-funded initiative aims to equip local enterprises with the essential skills and strategies needed to thrive in the competitive online marketplace.

Rep. Carl Albrecht of House District 70, the driving force behind the Agriculture and Rural Small Business Innovation Initiative, expressed his satisfaction with the positive impact achieved through the partnership with Utah State University Extension. The ECA program is set to empower rural Utah businesses and agricultural producers, providing them with a valuable tool for expanding their reach across local, national, and global markets.

The comprehensive six-week program offers a personalized approach to guide small businesses through the intricacies of establishing a robust online presence. Individual consultations, mentoring services, and regular milestone check-ins are integral components of the program. Participants will delve into crucial aspects of online business, including website development, online marketing, search engine optimization, and customer relationship management.

“This initiative comes at a crucial time for rural businesses, offering them a chance to thrive in the digital era,” stated Representative Carl Albrecht. “I envisioned the Agriculture and Rural Small Business Innovation Initiative making a positive impact, and thanks to Utah State University Extension, it has become a reality.”

The ECA program is made possible through full funding from the Utah Legislature, and it comes at no cost to selected small businesses in rural Utah. The initiative seeks to bridge the digital gap for agricultural and rural enterprises, providing them with the necessary tools to boost their sales and compete effectively in the online landscape.

Part of the broader ROI program, which has already made significant strides in driving economic growth and promoting remote work skills, the ECA specifically targets businesses in the agricultural and rural sectors. The program has already demonstrated its effectiveness during the pilot phase, collaborating closely with two businesses to successfully list their products and services online.

Ken White, USU Extension vice president, expressed enthusiasm about the potential impact of the E-Commerce Accelerator program on small rural businesses. “This program has the potential to be an economic game-changer, leveling the playing field for small rural businesses and opening access to markets previously unavailable to them,” he commented.

As the ECA program officially launches, USU Extension is eager to expand its reach and assist more rural companies in navigating the e-commerce landscape. The initiative invites interested businesses to explore the opportunities it offers for growth and success in the online marketplace. For detailed information, interested parties can visit the ECA webpage.


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