More women in e-commerce continue to excel in the industry and are stepping out of their comfort zone to pursue their dreams and transform their lives. On March 8, the world will celebrate International Women’s Day (IWD) and this year’s campaign theme, #BreakTheBias, promotes gender equality and a community that embraces diversity, equity, and inclusivity. In celebration of IWD, three local female Shopee sellers share how they overcame the challenges they faced and how they’re breaking barriers. They hope that their stories may serve as an inspiration to other aspiring women entrepreneurs venturing into the world of e-commerce.
Embracing the Shift to Online Selling
Setting up an online business requires a lot of focus and can be intimidating. Shine de Luna was pregnant when she started selling online, and eventually decided to focus on her online business when she gave birth so that she can spend more time taking care of her child. She knew it was risky and faced many difficulties when she first set up her online shop. “I had zero orders in the beginning, but I persevered, pushed forward, and didn’t give up. I made sure I boosted my posts every four hours and replied to inquiries fast. It took months before my business picked up the pace, and now, I’m getting a hundred orders daily.” In addition to traveling to Divisoria to source products to sell, she also had to tend to her child and bring them along.
The same goes for Anjelica Tullao, who started with zero ratings and zero items sold. “Establishing the customer’s trust was my main obstacle. For them to consider buying from my shop, they need to trust me and that my products are of high quality,” she said.
Emerald Sin, on the other hand, was already selling her pre-loved clothes in college to finance her studies. She invested in a brick-and-mortar store located around the University Belt and shifted online to cater to her clients who were going home to their provinces.
Rising Above the Challenges One Step at a Time
Despite the hardships faced, Shine, Emerald, and Anjelica rose above the challenges, determined to succeed no matter what. For Shine, not only was she able to provide for her family, but she also became a channel of blessing to the few workers she employed to get her business running. “I am grateful to my team for helping me through it all. It was risky, but it was worth it because I can also help others during this difficult time.” It was also through online selling that she was able to help achieve her parent’s lifetime dream of owning their own house.
Both Emerald and Anjelica focused on how to market their products effectively. Emerald branched out and became a direct manufacturer, hiring local seamstresses to produce high-quality fashion products, while Anjelica maximized the in-app features of Shopee to improve customer trust and retention. “Whenever I encounter issues, Live Chat is always available to answer all my queries. I am also grateful to the Shopee team who helped me become a ‘Preferred Seller’ and recommended me to join big campaigns.” With her shop’s good performances, she went from being a one-man team to having seven additional team members. “With our shop’s growth, we were able to expand our office, rent a warehouse, and purchase two vehicles for personal and professional use.”
Supporting Women in E-commerce
This International Women’s Day, Shine, Emerald, and Anjelica encourage other women to step up, break stereotypes, and reach for their dreams. “I’m encouraging those who are hesitant, to take a leap of faith. I believe that we can do so much more. Don’t let the circumstances stop you from being successful and from helping others. A successful journey always starts with someone determined to overcome anything life throws at us,” said Emerald.
Shine, on the other hand, is proud to be both a mother and a successful entrepreneur. “Sobrang saya ko kasi natupad ko ang pangarap ng aking mga magulang na magkaroon ng sariling bahay sa tulong ng pagiging online seller ko.” (I’m very happy because I was able to fulfill my parent’s dream of having our own house, and this was made possible by being an online seller). She also adds that women should pursue their dreams and work hard towards it. “Huwag kang aasa sa magulang or partner mo. Naging makahulugan ang pagiging anak at ina ko dahil nabigay ko sa kanila ang pangangailangan nila mula sa negosyo ko.” (Don’t just expect things from your partner or parents. I feel fulfilled as a mother and daughter since I can provide my family what they need thanks to my online business.)
Anjelica also pushes aspiring female entrepreneurs to grab the opportunity. “Find your own purpose, challenge yourself, and pursue your goals. Being a successful woman in business means being your authentic self and showing up, day after day, to get to work your dreams.”
Celebrate and support local sellers like Anjelica, Emerald, and Shine at the 3.15 International Women’s Day Sale this coming March 8. Here, users can look forward to 90% off on select categories like Lifestyle, Fashion, and many more. For those who are considering online selling and want to explore the evolving digital space, they can Get Started on Shopee right now.