As the pandemic dawned upon the world, there was a major shift in consumer adaptability towards online businesses. Factors such as the rise of the internet and the digitalization of commerce played a crucial role in shifting this focus.
The frequent use of the internet and online shopping has led many women entrepreneurs to initiate home-based businesses, who were otherwise reluctant to do so. However, out of the 49% of Pakistan’s total population that constitutes women, only 24% make up the labor force.
Bridging the gap between women entrepreneurs and their dream, Daraz, Pakistan’s largest e-commerce player has generated 2,000 women sellers and continues to facilitate women entrepreneurs who wish to set up their stores on Daraz.
Leveraging its strength as Pakistan’s largest online marketplace, Daraz has now partnered with Femprow, a social enterprise that helps women in advancing their professional growth and economic empowerment by providing them education, capacity building, business, and community support.
This fruitful collaboration is bound to help newly registered women sellers who wish to establish their shops on a wider platform and will enhance their growth, reach, and sales.
We talked to some of the marvelous women entrepreneurs who have been a part of Femprow’s journey. Here is what they had to say about their experience:
Sanam Asif – Miryana Organics
Sanam started creating organic lip balms as a bonding activity with her daughter in her home kitchen. Later, as she started expanding her product range, Sanam started selling her products online under the name Miryana Organics. Made with natural products and no preservatives, Sanam sells natural and cruelty-free skin products in an affordable price range.
However, as the pandemic hit the markets, the prospect of selling became quite narrow and Sanam had to shift to online business solely. Having little or no knowledge about online marketing was the one hurdle setting her back so much that she thought of shutting down the business completely during the lockdown.
Later, she got to know about Femprow and as she associated with them, she got to learn all about expanding her reach through their online courses. Femprow helped her get the reins back on her business by running online ads free of charge.
Now, as she hops on to Femprow’s journey with Daraz, Sanam is quite bullish that her business will see new horizons of success. Daraz being a reputable and trustworthy platform will get her business a wider audience and will help generate more sales for her business.
Nageen Marfani – Vogue Aesthetic
Nageen’s brand Vogue Aesthetic that features premium luxury products has been in the market for the last 4 years. Being a stationery hoarder herself, Nageen always sought top-quality luxury products which were hard to find in Pakistan. As a result, she had to import such products from abroad which cost her a lot.
This struggle made her realize the need for an online marketplace for Pakistanis who wanted to get their hands-on premium luxury products for their aesthetical needs. Not only is she now providing top-notch beautiful products in Pakistan but also ships purely Pakistan-made products worldwide as well.
Nageen’s entrepreneurial journey took a positive turn when she joined Femprow which allowed her to know all there is about online marketing. She is eternally grateful to their training methods that empower women by teaching them new ideas and sales tricks.
During Covid times, Femprow helped Nageen build an online presence for her brand by allowing women like her to expose their businesses to a larger audience. Being an active buyer at Daraz, Nageen is quite excited to be joining the biggest name in Pakistan’s online shopping industry as she is positive it will help her brand reach a wider audience and generate more sales.
Although Amna is a housewife and a proud mother of four children, she always had bigger dreams. Ever since she was 14, she dreamt of being financially independent as an entrepreneur. All she needed was a push that Femprow provided her.
Amna deems herself quite lucky as when businesses were striving for survival during the lockdown, she was the one thriving as her business came into being due to lockdown. Accessing the growing need for good quality loungewear during quarantine times, Amna decided to import top quality wear from abroad to provide it to the people here.
She is particularly grateful to Femprow’s guidance which acted as a backbone when it came to marketing strategies and technicalities. Not only did Femprow handle Amna’s financial aspect of the business very expertly, but they also gave their services free of charge which is unique in today’s business world.
Daraz has been excelling with the speed of light in the business world. For Amna, collaborating with Daraz means more success to her loungewear brand and consequently more sales.
Nousheen Barkat – Asgur
Named after a flower in her native language, Nousheen has started a honey extraction business which is run mainly by women of her area. Her motivation for starting this business was the birth of her child who has a neuromuscular condition that does not allow him to move his lower body parts.
Depressed after finding out about her son’s condition, Nousheen decided to involve herself in a nourishing activity that would be good for her and her family’s mental health. This motivation led her to start her venture Asgur which deals in the extraction of natural honey.
When Nousheen joined Femprow, it was like entering a family of like-minded women entrepreneurs for her. By meeting ladies with vast experience in business and technology, Nousheen gets to learn a lot from her peers. While every business suffered due to Covid, Femprow was there to support Nousheen’s business by offering free online classes to polish her skills.
Nousheen thinks that the importance of Daraz as a platform for any emerging business is undeniable which is why she is quite excited to expand her audience and sales through Daraz.
Mariam Ali – Knots and Curl
Mariam Ali is the founder of ‘Knots and Curls’ which is an online printing business for customized orders. Mariam started her business journey 9 years ago and shifted it to an online platform 5 years back with the help of Femprow. Having no knowledge about how online businesses work, Mariam learned a lot from Femprow’s courses.
Ever since she started working in collaboration with Femprow, Mariam began to witness a huge increase in her sales. While business was down during Covid and it was hard to hit the market, Femprow led every woman entrepreneur and equipped them with the perfect tools to boost their sales in an efficient manner.
Mariam has high hopes from her collaboration with Daraz. She is positive that joining such a huge platform as a seller will definitely be beneficial for her business.
Sadia Hassan – SansHassan
Before starting her own business 4 years ago, Sadia was a stranger to the tech world. Her lack of knowledge of social media apps such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter was the main hurdle stopping her from excelling. In such circumstances, joining Femprow was nothing short of a blessing for her.
During the lockdown, Femprow has helped Sadia’s business more than ever. It is only due to Femprow’s guidance that she is now able to extend her reach to a huge mass using social media tools. Sadia is a huge fan of Daraz and is, therefore, beyond ecstatic to join it as a Seller.
She is grateful to Femprow for providing her and her fellow entrepreneurs this great opportunity to reach such a wider audience through a platform like Daraz.
Irum Ala – Organic Roots
Irum Ala is the founder of Organic Roots – a brand that is proud to be the pioneer of natural indigo leaf powder in Pakistan. Irum started this venture in 2016 when her need for natural indigo leaf powder made her realize its importance and shortage in our country. She soon started to import it from abroad to provide it to other people and has now successfully expanded her business to provide natural hair care, henna, botanical hair dyes. Irum has been working with Daraz for the last 3 years and her experience is nothing but amazing.
Being a part of Femprow has allowed Irum to excel in her business in terms of growth and reach. She is grateful to both Daraz and Femprow for providing her with the necessary tools and a platform to expand her business successfully.
Daraz, with the help of Femprow, is playing its part as Pakistan’s leading e-commerce company by providing women entrepreneurs with a platform to scale their businesses and reach more customers on a level playing field. While there is a lot that needs to be done in this aspect, this collaboration between Daraz and Femprow is certainly a great step forward.