Facebook, to many, is the name of a blessing in disguise. It has changed lives beyond expectations, created self-employment, boosted confidence and to the least provided means to connect with our long lost loved ones.
F-commerce, in simple words, is the use of Facebook as a platform to conduct business. The primary operations of the business, such as selling products and customer management are done via Facebook.
F-commerce is now a booming sector for entrepreneurs throughout the country. However, it seems to have benefitted female entrepreneurs the most by letting them be financially independent through small online ventures.
Work from home
F-commerce enables women to work from the comfort of their homes. It saves them from the hassle of travelling or the workplace harassment. It allows them to balance their daily chores and provide sufficient time to look after their families along with running their business.
The success of a business in many ways depends on its marketing activities. While many take up a mass marketing approach, the more precisely a marketing communication reaches its target audience, the better the results. F-commerce allows entrepreneurs to reach their targeted customers at a bare minimum cost. The online selling arena is diverse. There are buyers of both luxury and necessity items.
Low capital requirement
F-commerce businesses require lower capital to start than traditional business ventures. Conducting business online saves the cost of storing inventory, employing sales staff, renting out a place, utilities etc. An online business can suffice with a laptop, an internet connection and a smartphone.
F-commerce has enabled women to earn and create employment for women. Women, through such business ventures, are boosting the economy through more significant income and higher spending. They are creating employment opportunities not only for other women employed in F-commerce but also for the entire industry of delivery or courier services. Delivery service is an essential aspect of customer experience in F-commerce. Businesses are being reshaped and revamped due to the rise of F-commerce.
F-commerce allow women to follow their heart and enrich the creative work field. Many customers, who purchase online, demand customised products. A good number of talented women are taking up this chance to utilise their creative talents. It has also become a way for many to nurture their artistic skills. F-commerce has made it possible for both the artists and the customers to make their inner desires come true.
Creating new roles
Due to the vast number of women involved in F-commerce, numerous Facebook groups are designed to facilitate both buyers and sellers. Women in this field are helping each other, reaching out each other for queries, customer service, vendor selection, and delivery service etc. since the F-commerce industry is female-dominated, women are at ease to seek help and advice from various support platforms consisting of online sellers.
Such platforms also work as an online catalogue to display their products or to engage with customers -- activities, which are crucial, yet difficult for online businesses. Such support platforms of Facebook groups have also given rise to Facebook Influencers, who in turn act as marketing agents of online sellers.
F-commerce has flourished due to increasing number of working women, hassles of traffic to go shopping. However, it is essential to remember this business is based on trust. Incidents of fraudulent activities over F-commerce business is not uncommon.
Under such circumstances, for the sector to sustain its growth and profitability and live up to its potential, businesses are to take a professional approach in dealing with customers and delivering both products and services.
The writer is working at a financial institute in Bangladesh. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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