Here is how eCommerce is turning Indian women into entrepreneurs

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Did you know that e-commerce is conducting a silent revolution in terms of women empowerment? A recent Economic Times reports suggests that with the emergence of online marketplaces such as Amazon, Snapdeal and Flipkart, thousands of women are gaining financial independence by selling products across such as health care, home furnishing, jewellery, handicrafts, and fashion apparel.

Constituting about 20% of the 1 million sellers on platforms that form the $12 billion online retail industry in the country, women are catalysing the growth of female workforce that has dipped almost 9% since 2010. These online retail platforms are helping women evolve from farming, textiles, and construction sectors and gradually develop into independent seller and eventually employers.

Citing example of two middle-aged women, Namita Jain and Arti Goel, the ET report explains how they developed a business from scratches through the ecommerce sites. With a team of 4 people Jain deals in household utensils, right from sourcing the products to dispatching them through couriers. Throughout the day she responds to 400 orders each day. Goel on the other hand has given an edge to her husband's business of home furnishings. While her husband looks after corporate orders of hotels and hospitals, she retails the products online with a team of 50 people.

The Economic Times adds, women such as Jain and Goel are part of a growing community of micro-entrepreneurs in a country where women are in the minority in the workforce.

Of the 30,000 listed sellers of Flipkart, 20% are women. Interestingly, about 15% of these women are customers-turned-sellers. "These women have identified the gap and launched their own brands offering regional handicrafts, antique pieces, and designer wear," Ankit Nagori, senior vice president, marketplace, at Bengaluru-based Flipkart told The Economic Times.

(Image: BCCL)

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