Now Open sign for small business

Connecting New York State-based small businesses with new customers, broader markets and bigger opportunities.

Across the globe, COVID-19 has been enormously disruptive not only to individuals’ ways of life and daily routines, but to everyday commerce.  New Yorkers have a long legacy of seizing disruption as a competitive advantage and business opportunity. Empire State Digital is an invitation for small businesses to explore the benefits of expanding beyond their physical brick and mortar location to an online marketplace. 

Building a digital presence allows entrepreneurs and small business owners to reach their existing customer base, new markets and provides continuity of business operations in a time when social distancing is an essential public health priority.

Through unique partnerships with leading global e-commerce and e-payment providers, Empire State Digital connects New York-based small businesses with the education, access and resources needed to digitize, expand and adapt to the new economy due to the changes from COVID-19. Terms and conditions may apply.

Counseling and hands-on assistance is also available to small businesses through Empire State Development’s Entrepreneurship Assistance Centers, Small Business Development Centers, Manufacturing Extension Partnership Centers, Incubators and Hot Spots.*   

Ritual ONE & PayPal

Ritual ONE with PayPal payment options provides businesses the opportunity to easily offer commission-free digital ordering.

Empire State Digital Partners


Easily create an online store or ordering page and immediately begin selling online. Ship orders to your customers, or offer curbside pickup and local delivery — no matter what type of business you have. Join one of Square's educational webinars and dedicated office hours to learn how to quickly launch your free eCommerce website, or sign-up for Square now through our dedicated New York page.


Shopify is an all-in-one commerce platform with everything entrepreneurs need to launch and grow their business. From creating an ecommerce store, selling directly on marketplaces and social media, and bringing in-store and online sales together with Shopify point-of-sale (POS).


Etsy is a marketplace that connects creative entrepreneurs with tens of millions of buyers around the world. Etsy offers a suite of services to help sellers run their businesses, including payments, shipping, and advertising, and offers a wide range of onboarding and educational resources.


Clearbanc helps you understand what your business is worth and provides funding and advice to increase your valuation. Clearbanc has already invested over $1 billion to help companies scale their online presence, and New York-based businesses receive a free valuation consultation and exclusive discounts.

Division of Small Business

Connect to programs and initiatives supporting small business growth and helping entrepreneurs maximize opportunities for success.

New York Forward Loan Fund

The New York Forward Loan Fund (NYFLF) is a new economic recovery loan program aimed at supporting New York State small businesses, nonprofits and small landlords.

New York State Organizations Available to Assist

New York's statewide community network of Small Business Development Centers, Entrepreneurship Assistance Centers and Community Development Financial Institutions are available to help guide your business through the loan application process.


The New York Small Business Development Centers (NYSBDC) provides small business owners and entrepreneurs in New York with the highest quality, confidential business counseling, training, and business research at no cost.
Click here


Entrepreneurship Assistance Centers (EAC) provide instruction, training, technical assistance and support services to new and aspiring entrepreneurs in local communities statewide.
Click here


CDFIs are local financial service providers with locations throughout New York State, and often are the sole provider of banking and other financial services in communities that are not served by traditional banks and financial institutions.
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Empire State Development (“ESD”) provides the Empire State Digital website for informational purposes only.  While ESD makes efforts to post accurate and reliable information, it does not guarantee or warrant that the information on this web site is complete, accurate or up-to-date. ESD assumes no responsibility for the use or application of any posted material by any person or business. The Empire State Digital web site is intended solely for the purpose of electronically providing the public with information on electronic or digital commerce platforms, vendors and enablers and convenient access to information and resources. ESD assumes no responsibility for any errors, omissions or other discrepancies between the information posted here and on any vendor’s website.

The Empire State Digital website links to websites maintained by other entities. Reasonable precautions are taken to link only to websites which are appropriate and maintained by reputable organizations. However, those web pages are not under ESD’s control and ESD makes no warranties, guarantees, or representations as to the accuracy, value, quality, or fitness for a particular purpose of the products, services, or educational, training and/or informational content and materials that may be offered by such organizations or that are posted on their websites. An Empire State Digital Partner’s products, services, website, platform or promotions may be subject to terms, conditions or limitations. Any use of an Empire State Digital Partner’s products, services, website, platform or promotional offerings by any persons or businesses is a transaction, engagement or act occurring by and between such partner and such person or business. ESD is not a party to any such transaction, engagement or act and bears no obligation with respect to any such transaction, engagement or act. 

ESD does not endorse products or services; no such endorsement should be implied by the identification of any organization on its website.  ESD does not and cannot guarantee the privacy or security of information shared by a business or person with any electronic commerce platform, vendor or enabler. 

ESD cannot provide individual advice or counseling, whether business, legal, or otherwise. If you are seeking specific advice or counseling, you should contact a lawyer or other professional.

If you are a provider of services in electronic and/or internet-based commerce and are interested in participating in the Empire State Digital initiative, please contact us at [email protected].