By Chris Collins.
The emergence of the online female entrepreneur
In the year 2016 the world has a female German Prime minister, a female British Prime minster and potentially for the first time a female American President, unfortunately you would not be able to name a single female founder in the world's top ten most visited websites, or even in the world's top twenty most visited websites which include the likes of Google, Youtube, Facebook, Baidu, Yahoo, Wikipedia, Amazon, QQ, Twitter, etc., However there are some very fascinating facts about the contributions of women to the internet not to be ignored.
The future of 2017, 2018 could be very different, with more female entrepreneurs dominating and owning the most visited websites.
Women drive the trend towards visually oriented social sites such as Instagram, Tumblr, and Pinterest, which are the three fastest growing social media networks today.
Women on eBay on average earn less than men, and there has been a shift recently by women towards joining other online selling platforms such as Etsy and founding their own, which perhaps convey an 'Elegance' that women love that isn't present on established selling platforms such as Amazon and eBay.
Etsy an online selling platform, a serious contender to eBay, where, Etsy is dominated by 86% women, with annual gross sales of over 2.39 billion. Etsy also happens to be founded by four guys! However the influence of the female touch could arguably contribute to their success, the Chairman of the board of Etsy is Caterina Fake founder of Findary, previously co founder of Flickr. Flickr co founded by Caterina Fake was purchased by Yahoo for a staggering 25 million dollars.
There are many inspiring stories of female entrepreneurs who have founded well known websites such as Slideshare.net, Huffington Post, Flickr, Blurb, Lifehacker, Meebo and Ning, to name but a few. Even Cisco was founded by a woman!
Fascinating stories of driven female entrepreneurship include Birchbox.com which was co-founded Hayley Barna and Katia Beauchamp who met at Harvard Business School. Birchbox.com is one of the top monthly box-subscription services created for women looking for new beauty product samples to try. Birchbox has more than 800,000 subscribers and brings in over $96 million a year in sales.
Some of the most interesting online female entrepreneurship stories prove you don't need to have a Harvard or MIT degree to succeed in online business, they include those of Catherine Cook who founded MyYearBook.com when she was just 15, MyYearBook has grown to 3 over million members worldwide and rakes in annual sales in the seven figures! You are never too young to start. Juliette Brindak came up with the idea for missoandfriends.com at just 10 years old, nine years on her business is worth over $15 Million and is visited by millions of girls every month.
Numerous successful lifestyle websites have sprung up to cater for women's interests, which is a ripe area for female entrepreneurs to contribute and become successful.
Jezebel.com, Cosmopolitan.com, Realsimple.com, Sheknows.com, Glamour.com, Shape.com, Allwomenstalk.com, Womansday.com, Yourtango.com, Allure.com, Womensforum.com, Redbookmag.com, Cosmopolitan.co.uk, More.com, Shoppinglifestyle.com, Sofeminine.co.uk, Chatelaine.com, Bust.com, Indusladies.com, Unwomen.org, bitchmedia.org,Vixendaily.com,Feministing.com, Aauw.org, Identity-mag.com
Facebook and game designers take the woman factor very seriously, some online gaming communities have women of the age of 55+ accounting for as much as 17% of unique players. Some games are designed with more gender neutral appeal while others 'Pink games' are designed around types of things that girls should like, e.g. fashion, design, cooking, garden, horses.
In the future we can expect more content and brands leaning towards women’s interests. Marketers should seriously take note. If you’re a woman, you should be really inspired by the real girl power behind the growth of the internet and social media.