The women’s rights advocates of ChooseWomen.org are planning to launch a website this month for consumers looking to support women-owned businesses across the globe.
The website will allow users to search for a business by zip code or product. So far, more than 70 retailers have chosen to participate, including fashion brands like Coach, Nasty Gal, and Cynthia Rowley.
A percentage of each sale on the website will go towards giving microloans to impoverished women so that they can start their own businesses. The founder of the site, Wendy Diamond, said that she was inspired to launch the initiative after seeing the success of the Adelante Foundation in Honduras, which also provides microloans to aspiring female entrepreneurs.
“I saw firsthand how 90% of the money earned by these women is used to educate their children and provide for their families – bettering the overall community,” said Diamond.
“Women worldwide have historically been underpaid, undervalued, underrepresented and underfunded … and still are,” Diamond noted.
She is also the founder of Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, which is on November 19. Not only is Diamond striving to break through the proverbial glass ceiling, but she is also focused on simply spreading awareness. Though most people have a vague understanding of the obstacles women face, few realize just how great the gender gap really is when it comes to income and positions of power within the workforce.
In reality, women hold less than five percent of CEO positions and 19.2% of Board seats in S&P 500 companies. More than 9.4 million U.S. firms are owned by women, companies with women on their boards are 30% more profitable, yet only seven percent of venture dollars go towards women-owned businesses.
“When you look at the numbers, it all starts making sense that we need to really empower women,” said Diamond.
Because 80% of consumers report doing “a lot” of research before making a purchasing decision, the ChooseWomen.org website should successfully act as a strong marketing initiative for participating businesses.
As many as 60% of marketing professionals say that “blog content creation” is one of their top priorities. Blogs are necessary for a successful SEO strategy, but having their brand advertised, recommended, and sold on another reputable website, will certainly boost lead generation and conversion for these companies as well.