More women are starting businesses today than ever before. According to American Express, the number of women-owned businesses in the U.S. increased by 58% between 2007 and 2018.
However, this growth only tells part of the story. Women in business continue to face numerous challenges, including limited funding, balancing at-home responsibilities, and inadequate support systems. But all is not lost.
A growing number of women entrepreneurs are turning to eCommerce. A study by eBay shows that the number of women in eCommerce businesses increased by over 28% in the last decade in the UK, and the U.S., Australia, and Canada rank as the best destinations for such entrepreneurs.
Why Should Women Entrepreneurs Venture Into eCommerce?
Many women are not just entrepreneurs, but the main owners of household and child rearing responsibilities.
Demands from personal and professional obligations can force women to abandon or neglect some of these obligations. It can therefore be an uphill task to balance all these spheres of their lives.
Fortunately, eCommerce can come to the rescue. It suits female entrepreneurs as it offers flexibility to balance their lives and their business. Women can run businesses from home and on the go, with a schedule that works for them.
Tap Into Social Shopping
Over the last decade, eCommerce has grown tremendously. It has also revolutionized how people shop; and social shopping is one of the biggest emerging trends.
Social shopping or social commerce is an eCommerce strategy in which shopping experiences are shared with a social network. Here, businesses streamline their buying processes for customers and social media to increase the efficacy of their ads. Why?
Social shopping impacts customers' buying behavior. Forbes Magazine reports that over 30% of consumers admit they'd purchase on social media platforms like Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Industry experts believe women can tap into social shopping and it is an area where they can excel.
Access to funding is still a major challenge facing women entrepreneurs. According to the U.S Chamber of Commerce, less than 5% of venture capital went to women-owned startups in 2018.
Going by these statistics, getting funds to scale or grow a traditional business can be twice as hard. But it doesn't have to be like that in the world of eCommerce.
Although the eCommerce business might seem like a big concern when it comes to scalability, it isn't. In fact, it can even be managed by one person.
For example, women selling products can grow their eCommerce businesses fast thanks to platforms like Facebook Marketplace. And working with an order fulfillment company like Rakuten Super Logistics (RSL) is a sure way to look big, scale your business, and boost your bottom line.
How Outsourcing Order Fulfillment Can Help Scale Your Business
Imagine what your eCommerce business would be like if you didn't have to deal with warehouse operations such as picking, packing, and shipping. Easier, right?
The reality is that many companies don't know the true cost of warehousing. According to a McKinsey report, warehouse operations cost businesses over $350 billion every year.
And that amount is expected to increase as the number of eCommerce businesses rises. So, if you want to scale your eCommerce business, it may be wise to use a 3PL order fulfillment provider.
Save On Shipping
Shipping expenses are one of the largest costs for eCommerce businesses. But since shipping rates depend on order volume, working with a fulfillment partner helps you get better rates.
Many providers will allow business owners to piggyback on their rates. And as such, you can benefit immensely from their collective shipping volume. You can also take advantage of lower shipping costs by allowing your 3PL to select the best shipping option for you.
Accelerate Order Delivery
Most women in eCommerce ventures work from a location that's convenient for them. So, if you do fulfillment in-house, your location may not provide optimal costs and transit times that suit your customers.
Working with a 3PL that has centrally located eCommerce fulfillment warehouses allows you to save on shipping costs. It also helps you get faster delivery to your customers.
Reduce Operating Costs
When you manage your warehouse operations, you bear the cost of overhead. But when you work with a fulfillment partner, you can forego this huge expense.
This includes major costs such as equipment, utilities, rent, and not to mention the cost of labor. This helps you save thousands, if not millions of dollars in operating costs.
With rapid technological advancement and mobile purchasing, eCommerce has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry— And women are taking a significant lead.
eCommerce offers more accessibility and flexibility than traditional businesses, something that many women entrepreneurs yearn for. At Rakuten Super Logistics, we want to help women in eCommerce take their businesses to greater heights.