It’s not unlikely for the world to believe that economics is a male-dominated area.
But female entrepreneurs are breaking these stereotypes and proving their mettle by running some of the most successful ecommerce businesses.
Down below, we’ve covered some successful females in the ecommerce niche whose stories exude passion and motivation.
These female entrepreneurs show us that a decent idea, a strong motivation, and a passion for execution are all that matter when it comes to selling online.
The stories below will inspire you and may even push you to start an ecommerce business of your own. Plus, it also covers some tips for existing ecommerce businesses on how to boost their sales during the holiday season.
So, let’s get down to it and go through 11 stories of women who are running successful ecommerce businesses.
1. Catherine Wilson – Essential Derma
Catherine Wilson owns Essential Derma, a skincare store specializing in beauty devices such as derma rollers, gua sha, facial rollers, etc.
She started her business because she wanted to be her own boss!
Essential Derma’s Conception and Business Journey
Catherine started her business back in 2017, as she was passionate about skincare and identified gaps in the skincare market.
She felt that the market lacked good skincare products and wanted to build products that actually worked.
“I wanted to become my own boss and could see a gap in the market for high-quality skin products that actually work.
Our products can completely remove stretch marks and acne scarring and reduce fine lines and wrinkles.”
Her business is growing steadily and winning her customer satisfaction. That’s actually what makes Catherine the happiest.
“It sounds a bit cliche, but my proudest achievements are simply the emails and photos from customers telling me how our products have changed their lives. My favorite ones are from young women who have almost completely removed their pregnancy stretch marks.”
Some Business Tips From Catherine for the Holiday Season
Catherine believes that the holiday season is usually slow for skincare products. That’s because people usually delay their skincare purchases and spend money to purchase gifts for others.
However, they tackle this blocker via email marketing.
“We generally use email marketing as our primary strategy. We gather as many emails as we can throughout the year, so we have an extensive list to market to during this time.”
Catherine’s Words for Budding Female Entrepreneurs
Catherine believes that the marketing world is male-dominated. But with the right approach, females can make it big there; it’ll take some hustle, but the results shall be worth it.
“I advise young women to research the brands they love and find female business owners. Follow them on Twitter, see how they live, and give yourself the daily motivation and inspiration you need to take action. It will take a lot of work, but in the end, you will be so proud of the person you will become.”
2. Liz Brezer and Amanda Pilgaard – PeapodMats
These two brilliant females are the co-owners of Peapod Mats. This business actually has a pretty unique story.
Liz and Amanda were two frustrated mothers tired of their children wetting the beds, inspiring them to come up with reusable waterproof mats under the name of PeapodMats.
Immediately after conception, Liz and Amanda received orders of 500 pieces, helping them to make $30,000 worth of sales in just a few months. This gave them conviction about the product’s potential. However, they didn’t have a marketing budget and immediately took their idea to Dragons’ Den.
“Our sales proved we had a product that is needed and works well, we just didn’t have a marketing budget to launch our brand, and social media was not yet born, so we decided to apply to pitch our PeapodMats on Dragons’ Den Canada, which is similar to Shark Tank in the USA.”
Their business took off right after that.
Liz and Amanda’s Advice for Other Female Entrepreneurs
PeapodMats saw many big moments, but one instance that made the owners really proud was when they unloaded a 40 ft. container all by themselves.
“We had to order more inventory to keep up with the demand but couldn’t afford to outsource the storage/fulfillment, so we cleared out Liz’s home garage to accommodate a 40ft container of inventory, which everyone told us we couldn’t do! We unloaded the 40ft container ourselves while the driver had a snack and slept.”
This shows the women’s dedication to their cause, which should be a great motivation source for female entrepreneurs. Liz and Amanda believe:
“If you have a product you believe in and proof that there is a demand, then go for it! Don’t think of why not to do it or listen to others’ discouraging comments. There are a lot of people with great ideas; however, they lack the personal drive/motivation to do anything. Many obstacles will come, but there is always a workaround; trust us, we have had many!”
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3. Kesha Rainey – Simply Charmed Greek
Founder of Simply Charmed Greek, Kesha Rainey, is another reputed name in the ecommerce segment. She runs an online retailer that specializes in Greek paraphernalia for Divine9 Sororities.
The Story Behind Kesha’s Simply Charmed Greek
Her vision behind establishing the business was to empower women from all walks of life.
“I was initiated into Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated in the Spring of 2014.
Being in a sorority, you will encounter challenges that will nudge you out of your comfort zone, and you will foster relationships with women that are both resilient and intelligent.
And in these seasons of developing and meeting sorority sisters from all over, the importance of being your “sister’s keeper” is essential.”
Kesha’s affiliation with Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. gave birth to the business idea. She wanted to build a brand that would help create some unforgettable bonds and moments between the sorority girls.
Kesha’s Biggest Achievement
Kesha is proud of achieving the official trademark for the business.
“One of our huge milestones to date is receiving our official trademark for Simply Charmed Greek®.”
But the reward didn’t come easy; she worked hard to take the business to new levels of success. For instance, her primary growth strategies were email marketing and retargeting existing customers through appreciation campaigns. And she keeps adopting new strategies that can lead the business to success.
Some Words by Kesha to Inspire Budding Female Entrepreneurs
Kesha has a short and sweet message for budding female entrepreneurs.
“The best encouragement is to trust the process. You are doing enough, and every day is a step further than the previous day.”
4. Maria Shriver – MOSH
Maria Shriver has had a rich life; she’s been a journalist, TV news anchor, advocate, First Lady of California, and author.
Now, at 66, she’s adopted the business of making lives better, physically and mentally. Maria’s the founder of MOSH – a mission-driven company that educates consumers on how their eating and drinking impact their mental and physical health.
Maria’s business journey dates back to when she saw her father suffering from Alzheimer’s. This led her to explore foods and edible options that were good for the health and the brain.
She took this idea to several investors, but to her surprise, no one saw potential in it. Even the idea of eating for brain and body health was alien to many. All of this was a little disappointing for Maria, but her son showed her a new opportunity.
He told her that she should pursue the idea on her own. And so she did. That’s how MOSH came into existence. And thus, the work began.
“We worked with a team of scientists to formulate our MOSH bars with a combination of adaptogens, superfoods, and vital brain nutrients, including Lion’s Mane, Ashwagandha, MCT Oil, and Collagen in addition to Omega-3s, Vitamin B12, and Vitamin D D3, to support a healthy brain.”
Once the product was ready, it was launched after thorough market research. The product was well received, and MOSH is now performing great in the market.
Maria’s Recommended Growth Strategies
MOSH’s success is a mix of several strategies, but some things worked better than others.
“The biggest asset to our growth strategy is communicating directly with our audience on social media.
Being an eCommerce makes it easier to grow your business organically through content. But having a consistent online presence across your social channels is key.
From posting interactive games on Instagram to sharing blog content on Facebook that educates consumers about your cause, you can create brand awareness and drive traffic to your website. And all without spending much money.”
Maria’s Words of Encouragement for Budding Female Entrepreneurs
Maria’s years of experience allow her to give some solid advice to budding female businesswomen.
“My advice for aspiring female entrepreneurs is that success often comes down to not only what you know but also who you know, which makes ongoing networking vital.”
She also believes:
“When a potential investor says no, ensure you’re seeking financial gurus who have experience working with businesses in your industry. Or, if another entrepreneur isn’t interested in a co-branding opportunity, stay positive and know your worth. Their hesitation will likely have nothing to do with their opinion of you or your brand.”
5. Sumeer Kaur – Lashkaara
Sumeer Kaur is another inspiring name in the ecommerce fashion space. Her brand is called Lashkaraa; a US-based Indian wear fashion house.
Lashkaraa’s Journey and Achievements
Sumeer started Lashkaraa with just a few thousand dollars in her pocket and big hopes in her heart.
She was passionate about fashion and wanted to float affordable and inclusive Indian clothing in the market, which she thought was missing. This vision gave birth to Lashkaraa.
“That is why I created Lashkaraa, a brand inclusive of all body shapes and sizes while providing exclusive, high-quality designs to customers worldwide at affordable pricing.”
Sumeer’s business attracts customers worldwide, and she’s proud to make affordable and beautiful Indian fashion available to divas globally.
“I am so grateful to be able to share my love of beautiful Indian fashion with the world through eCommerce.”
6. Kate Smith – ZippiLeather
Founder and Director of Marketing at ZippiLeather, Kate Smith, is an ecommerce veteran. She started her business in 1988, inspired by a love of fashion and a shared passion for quality craftsmanship.
A Little About ZippiLeather and Its Achievements
ZippiLeather’s mission is to create beautiful, customized, and handcrafted leather goods that are both stylish and functional.
Kate Smith has been leading the brand for over 3 decades and has introduced new and unique designs. Her business strategy revolves around providing customers with what they want.
“We focus on creating customized and handcrafted leather goods as per customers’ requirements that are both stylish and functional. We work hard to ensure that our products are accessible to a wide range of customers.”
And her strategy has boded well for the business so far. Kate is proud to have happy customers from all over the world.
Some Growth Strategies That ZippiLeather Implemented For Last Year’s Holiday Season
ZippiLeather really did attack the Holiday season last year. Their strategy was to manage PR and revamp their online presence to reach potential customers within and outside the USA.
“Secondly, we developed relationships with some of the most popular fashion bloggers and Instagram influencers, who helped to promote our brand and drive traffic to our website. Thanks to these efforts, we were able to reach a larger audience and generate more sales than ever before.”
Some Encouraging Words by Kate
Kate seems to have the perfect success recipe for making it big in the ecommerce industry. Here are her pearls of wisdom for those pursuing the entrepreneurial path:
“Believe in yourself and your vision, and don’t be afraid to take risks. The e-commerce world is constantly changing, and the only way to succeed is to stay ahead of the curve.
Be willing to put in the hard work required to build a successful business, and always remember that anything is possible if you set your mind to it. With determination and a bit of luck, you can achieve anything you want. So go out there and make your dream a reality!”
7. Gemma Smith – Re-vive the TEE
Gemma’s story is rather inspirational. After having her second baby, she didn’t want to work full-time, but the expenses demanded otherwise.
So she started looking for online money-making activities; one thing led to another, and she now owns Re-vive the TEE.
Re-vive the TEE’s Business Journey and Proud Achievements
Gemma had never worked with a sewing machine before. But, her creative muscles and the desire to support the family motivated her to purchase her first sewing machine.
She started sewing memory blankets and sold them on Facebook back in 2020. The money was good, but Gemma wanted to level up to better support her children. That led her to set up her own ecommerce store- Re-viva the TEE.
The business now sells custom quilts and pillows made with used tees. People love the product, and its demand is steadily rising. As of now, Gemma receives about 10 blanket orders per week from all over Canada.
This in itself is an achievement, but that’s not all. Gemma is proud that her business has saved over 12000 tees from ending up in landfills.
“Textile waste is one of Canada’s largest waste streams, so having an impact really does make me feel like I am on my way to achieving success.”
She’s also planning to use email marketing and Facebook advertisement this year to grow her business.
Some Words of Encouragement for Aspiring Female Entrepreneurs
Gemma believes that persistence is the key to success; she says:
“Just keep going- try and try again, don’t give up! Eventually, you will find the recipe for success. Invest in education and learn the platforms you want to advertise on. There are so many free resources out there worth trying.”
8. Lisa Lane – Rinseroo
“There’s got to be a better way to clean the show walls” – the legendary words behind Lisa Lane’s famous invention: Rinseroo.
Rinesroo’s Conception and Business Journey
The idea popped up in Lisa’s head when she was cleaning the shower walls by filling buckets of water. The process was tiring and frustrating, leading her to think of a smarter solution. That’s when Rinseroo was born. Lisa immediately had a product idea and was eager to pursue it.
She continued her part-time job and worked on the idea at night times and on weekends for a couple of years. Fast forward to the present time, the business is expected to close this year with 3 million dollars of sales.
Lisa sells her product via Amazon and a website. The business is scaling internationally, and she’s launching new product lines.
Plus, Lisa’s sales and marketing background is helping her a lot in finding new and creative ways to sell the product.
Lisa Lane’s Words of Encouragement for New Entrepreneurs
Being an entrepreneur is more about execution than coming up with new ideas; as Lisa says:
“If you have an idea in your head ( and most do) don’t assume that it has been done before do your homework, look into its potential, and if it looks like you may have a win er in your hands, do all in your power to make it happen.”
9. Amy Smith – Amy&Rose
Amy Smith is the co-founder of Amy&Rose along with her sister Rose, hence the name: Amy&Rose. It’s a fashion brand that sells bags and accessories for men and women.
Amy&Rose’s Business Journey
Amy and Rose figured that the market lacked good products for children and their parents. They wanted to make products that had great designs but didn’t have complications with usability.
Both sisters quit their jobs to focus on the business, and their first product was a diaper bag. Now, the business has expanded to new heights and has a vast product line.
“We are getting better and better over the years. We started as a small business, but now our brand, AmyandRose, has been featured on various platforms, including APNEWS, UpJourney, and more.”
Some Growth Strategies That Worked Well for the Business
The founders left no stone unturned to grow their business and went big with marketing their brand to the target audience.
“We focused on social media, PR, and SEO to promote the brand and the products. We worked on creating awareness about our brand and products globally.
We also worked on building a strong relationship with our consumers by interacting with them on social media. We focused on building our brand presence and building brand affinity on various social media platforms, and this had a positive impact on our sales.”
Some Words of Encouragement for Budding Female Entrepreneurs
Amy was spot on with her motivation for females aspiring to become successful entrepreneurs.
“It may look like a man’s world, but the internet is a great equalizer. Women are a huge consumer base excites me about being a female entrepreneur. We live in the information age, and the competitive advantage is easy for anyone willing to work hard and smart.”
10. Colleen Humphrey – Wild Violetta
Colleen Humphrey runs an ecommerce business that sells handcrafted items, natural skincare goods, and gift sets.
Colleen’s Story and How She Started Wild Violetta
Colleen’s life situations weren’t very favorable when she started out.
She escaped an abusive marriage, left Texas with two young boys, and moved to California. Since the boys were young, she couldn’t take up a conventional job and be away from home for 1/3rd of the day. But something had to be done.
“The business was created out of pure necessity. I realized I had to mom first but also make money to survive. I couldn’t go into an office. My only windows to work were late nights and early mornings when the kids were in bed, so I knew Wild Violetta would be an online business.”
That is when she thought of selling the natural skin care products she’d been making for her boys. And voila – Wild Violetta came into being.
Her business saw several highs and lows. Colleen took on challenges and made Wild Violetta sail through some tough times.
Initially, she put in efforts to figure out what the market wanted. And her findings suggested that the right packaging was pivotal for the business’s growth. However, her focus was always on ecommerce. In 2015, Humphrey was also a finalist in the Martha Stewart American Made Style Awards.
Since the beginning, she has been selling online, but her major chunk came from wholesaling to retail stores. However, when the pandemic hit the world, her operational model primarily shifted to online selling.
Colleen’s Message for Budding Female Entrepreneurs
Colleen’s journey is inspirational, and her current business standing is an aspiration for many females.
Here are some words from Colleen for those choosing the entrepreneurial path.
“Ask people who are in similar businesses. Don’t try to recreate things from scratch on your own. There are so many great resources. People want to share their learned wisdom. They earned it, and they want it to be of value to others as well.
Also, I know a lot of people say, ‘find a mentor’ but I think that’s a lot harder to do — it’s easier said than done. It’s hard to find a long-term mentor, but it’s easy to solicit advice or bits and pieces of information as you go. And I wouldn’t ever be afraid to pick up the phone or send an
email. Just reach out.”
11. Reese Spykerman – DesignbyReese
Reese is an ecommerce consultant who helps businesses grow online. She is a digital marketing veteran and has been in the industry for about 2 decades now.
Reese’s Journey in the Ecommerce Space and Her Achievements
Reese entered digital marketing in its nascent stages back in 2004.
In the early years, she primarily focused on designing and developing client websites. However, she then realized that optimizing websites for search engines was more important than making them shiny and fancy.
“In 2004, my business initially was primarily website design and development. Over the years, it evolved and became less about making things pretty and more about optimizing websites for functionality and usability.”
This continued until 2016, when she saw the ecommerce scene explode, and decided to help ecommerce stores grow via optimization.
“As e-commerce exploded, I noticed so many ecomm websites weren’t well optimized, both in terms of persuasive design and copywriting, so around 2016, I began consulting for product businesses to help improve their conversion rates.”
Since then, she has dedicated her efforts to helping small businesses grow. Most of her clientele consists of ecommerce businesses that make about $100K a year. She also proudly mentioned one of her early achievements.
“One of my earliest wins in ecomm was creating a landing page for a client that helped increase her revenues from $3k to $15k a month. Even though that’s a modest revenue compared to many e-commerce shops. It was meaningful for her.”
Some Helpful Insights by Reese for Ecommerce Businesses
Reese, being a consultant, was kind enough to share some ways that helped her clients grow last year.
“One of my key tactics for clients was to build anticipation for these early sales by teasing the offers ahead of time in emails and making the sales exclusive, “insider access” sales only available to those who clicked a link confirming they wanted to access.”
This year her approach is a little different.
“This year’s different: consumer sentiment is cautious, the novelty of early sales with independent shops has worn off, and supply chain issues have settled a bit. So I don’t necessarily expect the early access sale strategy to be as successful as it was in 2021.”
Words of Encouragement for Budding Female Entrepreneurs
Reese believes that it’s better to be different than going for quantity:
“it’s far better to have just 1-2 products that truly offer something different — even if that different thing is the STORY behind the product — than a catalog of 100 items that can easily be purchased anywhere else.”
She also advised to stay focused and not target just about everyone.
“Don’t try to please everyone. Decide the main type of person your product is for, and go all in on making that person the center of your marketing strategies.”
The ecommerce space is generally considered a male-dominated industry.
However, the successful ecommerce business women covered in this blog show us that it’s possible to make it big in the ecommerce world as a female. Their stories are nothing short of an inspiration.
If you are on the edge of starting an ecommerce business, then the impassioned stories above are your sign to take the step forward.
Who knows, we may be covering your business story someday in some of our other articles!
If you are interested in knowing more successful business owners, do read our other article:
The 11 Most Successful Women Agency Owners In The Digital Agency Space
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Raza Aslam Lakhani
I'm a digital content producer at Cloudways. I'm also a hodophile- always ready to explore new places and cultures. Other than that, I play guitar and love to indulge myself in deep, meaningful conversations. Always looking for opportunities to learn new things.