We’ve all heard the term girl boss, which itself, unfortunately, does carry some negative connotations, but this isn’t enough to cover up the fact that women do struggle more when it comes to starting and keeping a business. However, while we have been making massive strides, there’s one specific aspect that has been helping this more than anything else - the digital world.
So, if you’re a female entrepreneur, perhaps it’s time to look online to help you balance things out for you. If you’re still not convinced, then read on for a more in-depth analysis of this topic.
Let’s start with the best part about digital businesses, the fact that they can level out the playing field. Gender biases are far more common in traditional businesses, so when there’s a lack of a traditional brick-and-mortar aspect, this can help you out.
If you’re worried you’ll be less successful pursuing an online business, you shouldn’t. There’s been a trend of digitizing traditional businesses and turning them online, which should convince you of their popularity.
As an example, we can look into the casino industry. While we still have traditional casino locations, there are plenty of online platforms that provide you with the same games and even offer you realistic live casino experiences. Meaning that you get a human host, live, while you play the game from the comfort of your home. This is a complete reinvention of the way regular, brick-and-mortar casinos used to operate, which stresses the importance of innovation in the digital age.
The digitalization trend in the gambling industry alone should be enough to convince you of the viability of an online business. It should teach you that as long as you grant your customers comfort, excitement, and flexibility, you’ll be able to retain a consistent audience.
Online gambling providers successfully overcame customer objections by obtaining gambling certificates, widening their array of games, and introducing novel payment methods. These attractive features not only craft a seamless customer experience but also build trust. So, building off of this model, it’s crucial that you follow the same path for your business – boosting innovation, credibility, and legitimacy in order to shift towards the digital world.
Such an approach can transcend gender biases, however, there’s more to the picture. Hopping on the digitalization bandwagon offers women entrepreneurs many hidden advantages, which we’ll uncover below.
Remarkably, when you convert your skills online, you’re far more anonymous than if you were in an actual physical location. This way, you can avoid the regular negative bias you might usually experience.
Plus, digital businesses offer more in terms of flexibility. Even though this is the 21st century, most of the caring goes onto women, be it for kids or elder parents. Thus having the ability to work in unconventional locations, such as your home or even on the go, with flexible hours can truly be the best, and at times the only, option for those looking to create their own business.
Moreover, as a female entrepreneur, it can be harder to get investors to back you up. As such, the fact that digital businesses require a relatively lower startup cost when compared to physical ones, you can actually launch your online business without breaking the bank.
Of course, this is something that plenty of other women have already noticed and are leveraging, but this is good! You have a community you can link up with to connect and discuss and share knowledge - this can only be beneficial to you. Sometimes, it truly takes a village to create a successful business.
Lastly, we have to discuss the benefits of accessing a global market. Some countries are more open-minded, and some are less so, but regardless, when you have an online business the geographical borders are virtual. You can grow and expand as much as you want globally with far more ease.
Okay, so we’ve discussed all of the positives, but to be truly impartial, we have to mention the challenges that come along with this type of venture. Most of these hurdles will be the same, regardless of your gender.
But let’s start with the gender gap that is highly prevalent in the tech industry. We’ve honestly done so much to advance and lower this gap, but honestly, there’s still a major disparity, making it much harder for women to progress in more tech-advanced fields, and thus, making it harder to learn everything you may need for an online business. This can be balanced out by online resources and education platforms like Udemy, but it’s still a hurdle nonetheless.
Another challenge is the standard societal one. You will hear it from family, from friends, and from strangers - even if you turn to an online business, you won’t be able to keep those around you from commenting negatively, regarding your new venture. It’s much harder to be taken seriously, which is why it’s best to simply ignore, or even cut out, these people and focus only on the supportive ones.
You will also find it much harder to establish yourself as an authority figure, particularly when you expand and need a staff. While you’d expect this from more narrow-minded men, there are plenty of women who unfortunately have the same limiting thought process. It might take a very long time, but pushing through is the only way forward.
We hope that these hurdles won’t stop you, as we need more diversity when it comes to businesses. Be it to provide specific services/products that are tailored for women, or to simply provide a fresh perspective to existing ones.
There’s a reason it’s called breaking the glass ceiling and not gently gliding through it, even in these modern times it can be exceptionally hard to be a female entrepreneur. However, the digital world has heavily impacted this, and in a positive way. So we hope that this will convince you that perhaps you should go digital when it comes to your startup.