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Unstoppable women - how their own businesses are giving them financial freedom

  • Written by Tamara Oppen, Vice President English Markets at GoDaddy

Each year we celebrate International Women's Day recognising and celebrating the contributions women make to industries and communities around the world. While there has been progress towards a more diverse workplace, there is opportunity to do more to help women in business. I understand what it means to be a woman in business, the strides we have and continue to make, and what needs to be done to make anything possible.

I am driven by my commitment where women can have a great career and a great family life. GoDaddy has enabled me to do both. GoDaddy’s Unstoppable Women in Business research showed 75% of female Aussie business owners think running their business gives them more opportunity than working for someone else. But why are women turning to running their own businesses?

Financial empowerment

International Women’s Day is not only a celebration of women, but also a chance to reflect on women in the workplace. GoDaddy’s research sought to understand the challenges and opportunities amongst women entrepreneurs in Australia and found that financial empowerment was a key driver of business ownership. Women want to be their own bosses and are making a real impact across Australia.

Almost half (43%) told us that financial opportunity was their biggest motivation to start a business, followed by flexibility - essential for one in four (25%). Our research found that women tend to overestimate the likely cost of starting a business or side-hustle while simultaneously underestimating their potential earnings. In reality, the barrier to launching a business is rarely cost - in fact, three in five started their business for under $1,000 and one in five launched with no start-up costs at all. It's not an easy path to take – but women’s passion, hard work, and dedication – combined with a great website can take you a long way.

Belief, persistence, and passion

So, what makes a great female business owner? Our research found there are many common traits that female business owners told us were non-negotiable for their success. The most important were confidence and self-belief (37%), adaptability (32%), persistence (29%), patience (27%), and passion (25%). With that combination of traits – women really are Unstoppable when it comes to business.

Two Unstoppable women who personify these traits are Ellie Cronin and Elyssa Bates, best friends and founders of Sage + Country, an ecommerce store selling personalised keepsakes. Ellie and Elyssa are set up their business to pursue a passion, which gives them more freedom, flexibility and financial empowerment.

In 2022, the two school friends saw an opening in the local market in Victoria for personalised baby gifts. When a friend had a laser printer for sale, they took the plunge; today they are just two of the millions of women worldwide capitalising on the incredible rise of ecommerce in the wake of the pandemic.

Initially, they started out making products for friends and family, but they quickly realised could make a business out of this simple idea. The ladies explained, “It went from there really. We were expecting a couple of orders every month – nothing too crazy. But it’s taken off!”. Ellie and Elyssa are busy women - holding down traditional, full-time jobs – but their goal is to turn their side-hustle into their primary income; looking to expand their products and presence as they do so.

Big dreams in 2023

Sage + Country is not alone in their desire to grow their business. Our research showed there are challenges ahead - most notably rising costs of living (47%) – but this isn’t dampening women’s hunger and appetite to succeed. Women are excited about opportunities to growing their brand and business (31%), developing their skills (24%), and expanding their product or services (17%).

The growth in the digital economy has inspired many Australian women to turn an idea or passion project into a business or side-hustle. The barriers to entry have never been lower, and the benefits range from financial empowerment to autonomy and freedom.

With a great idea, a website and the drive to succeed, female business are showing the world how they’re unstoppable. Today, and every day is about celebrating women and the potential of business ownership for half our population.

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