KUCHING: The online platform is the way forward for many businesses in the current economic climate.
According to an official of Tabung Ekonomi Gagasan Anak Bumiputera Sarawak (Tegas), the relevant training and workshops for such ventures are available here through various state government initiatives.
In an exclusive interview with New Sarawak Tribune, Sulie Lungkan Anthony Abell, the founder of Sluvi (an online business) thinks the digital platform has more advantages than others.
“The advantages of online businesses are that they are limitless and borderless. They reach our targeted customers worldwide.
“For example, through social media such as Facebook and Instagram, people all over the world can find our products as long as they are properly promoted,” he said.
She said some of her products have reached the United Kingdom, India, the Philippines, Brunei and Singapore.
Besides social media, she also leverages shopping platforms such as Lazada and Shopee.
“Based on my experience, to start an online business nowadays, it is better to put your business on ‘bootstrapping’ mode. It means to start with the most minimal cost.
Sluvi has been operating for a year and four months now empowering Borneo farmers by sourcing natural ingredients from them and creating natural skincare products that are safe for people, especially with sensitive skin.
At the moment, the product range are aloe vera green tea face mask, rice face mask, lemon coffee body scrub, stingless bee honey face and body scrub, honey green tea face and body soap and loofah.
Sulie also found that online business is much better as it can earn fast money and it really saves time.
“I also encourage others who want to do business but are afraid to go online, we must have a genuine passion for it as sometimes the online business can be more challenging than doing business in the traditional sense,” she said.
She also advised business owners to not give up easily and always strive for success.
“There can be times when a company almost hits rock bottom, but my advice is to be passionate in what you do as strong motivation can pull you up again.
“There is one unforgettable quote I got from my mentor, ‘Don’t fall in love with the idea, fall in love with the impact’,” she said.
The founder of Miracolo, Diana Su, believes in adaptability to the upcoming growth of e-commerce.
“We have plans to have our own online platform to reach more customers. We have customers from outside Kuching enquiring about our online platform,” she said.
She is cautious, though, as there’s much to be done before launching an online platform.
“On this, we will put our best foot forward to ensure the brands that we carry, especially the Sarawakian artisan beauty brands, have better marketing exposure and growth through Miracolo online platform.
“I think, we can’t deny the power of digital marketing and e-commerce’s impact on business, even for those in Sarawak. Due to the changing of times, we have to change as well to suit the changes in customers’ preferences and habits in their buying pattern,” she said.
Su also mentioned that the conventional brick and mortar businesses still play some part in customers’ buying habits.
“If you happen to get the chance to get into entrepreneurship, be prepared to work really hard. It’s not a bed of roses, but if you set your sight and mind to it, do not give up.
“Be prepared to do the dirty work from the bottom up and have an open mind on how to improvise. All in all, you must enjoy the entrepreneurship journey too for that will fuel your motivation at the end of the day,” said Su.
Miracolo is a retail shop currently at Vivacity Megamall introducing various products of Sarawak.