Thanks to a rise in opportunities for women entrepreneurs (especially when it comes to eCommerce), the small business space is becoming more diverse than ever.
Though a previously underserved demographic, the number of small businesses owned by women is steadily increasing worldwide, with Australia seeing a 46% increase over the past 20 years.
So, as the digital market tears down barriers and enables anyone with a laptop and a passion for business to join the modern market, we can look at a few key trends beginning to emerge from the area.
1. Digitalisation Continues to Expand
The market was already pivoting towards the digital realm long before the COVID-19 pandemic began. Of course, the crisis only accelerated this push, as modern businesses are becoming more focused on digital opportunities than ever.
With surveys showing 68% of customers now expect a seamless digital experience when they shop online, women entrepreneurs will need to turn to technical solutions to meet demand. Fortunately, dozens of solutions are already on the market to help them make this switch, from apps that help store sensitive documents in the cloud to online bookkeeping software that keeps finances in check.
The transition to online operations also presents a few benefits, such as reduced overhead costs, increased productivity, and improved efficiency — all of which can help a small business overcome the turmoil of the modern market.
2. Social Media Is More Important than Ever
When almost 80% of the Australian population is active on social media (that’s 20.5 million people!), all businesses should be focused on improving their digital social engagement strategy.
Of course, this is more important for small businesses hoping to connect with customers. For women-owned operations, the opportunity to engage with buyers on an authentic level cannot be understated, as this is an angle giant corporations can’t exactly replicate.
Already, hundreds of women are taking advantage of social media to support their operations. For instance, hashtags created specifically for women-owned businesses can allow customers to use their purchasing power for good. Platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels are also being used to help female entrepreneurs connect and establish a relationship with their audience, leading to increased brand recognition and loyalty.
3. Women Entrepreneurs Want Growth
Following a volatile post-pandemic market, it’s encouraging to see that nearly 60% of women-owned businesses reported earning a profit in 2022.
Still, growth remains a key goal for most women entrepreneurs, with many prioritising the following strategies:
58.33% increased their staff
37.04% invested in digital marketing
31.48% expanded or remodelled their business
49.07% of those who manage physical businesses are also focused on growing their current service or location, while 8.33% are considering expanding into an entirely new service or location.
4. eCommerce Can’t be Ignored
Projected to grow to nearly $5 trillion by 2025, eCommerce is an opportunity businesses of all sizes are keeping an eye on.
Going hand-in-hand with digitisation, women-owned small businesses should consider turning to eCommerce to expand their operations — that is, if they haven’t already. From its unmatched flexibility to reduced start-up costs, the digital market could enable thousands of women to overcome decades-worth of barriers with nothing but a laptop and a business plan.
5. The Next Generation of Women Entrepreneurs is Already Here
With the future’s challenges and opportunities laid out for small businesses, it’s worth recognising the women entrepreneurs who’ve already proven that success depends on nothing but determination and vision. So, here are a few names currently inspiring the market’s next generation of women pioneers.