NEW YORK – Americans increasingly select e-commerce as a buying option. According to a Pew Research study, eight-in-ten Americans are online shoppers.
American online shoppers grew from 22 percent in 2000 to 79 percent in 2016. There is a growing number of Muslim women utilizing the increase in online consumerism to provide specialized goods and services for Muslim consumers.
Online Muslim Book Store
American author and publisher Papatia Feauxzar recently launched Fofky’s Online Book Store. Fofky’s makes special boxes that include a selected Muslim-authored book along with an assemblage of snacks, which is meant to bring the book store experience home with an Islamic base.
A lack of diversity in the publishing world means Muslim authors struggle to have their works published and appreciated. Feauxzar told AboutIslam the motivation behind developing Fofky’s.
“It was a growing disappointment that Muslim works did not have a specific space to bloom. The idea for Fofky’s came to my mind when I read a post by author Umm Juwayriyah. Back then, I was thinking of a brick/mortar bookstore, but I couldn’t come up with good logistics to execute the idea. Then in mid-April 2017, the online alternative struck me and I ran with it!”
When asked how she anticipates Fofky’s being a sustainable exclusively online book store, Feauxzar explained, “Amazon is the biggest supplier of merchandise and it mainly operates online. I want Fofky’s to be that alternative for Muslims, where their works can have more visibility.”
“My products and services depict the sunnah way of a balanced way of life. It touches all aspects of the deen – love, hate, politics, finance, business, health, food – you name it.”
Halal, Natural Beauty Products
Addressing challenges many Muslims in the US encounter when searching for halal beauty products, Celin Childs launched Ruth&Mae’s Natural Products. The line of products are for curly and natural hair, coinciding with the natural hair movement and increasing number of African American and Black Muslim women wear natural hair styles.
“My products are natural and do not contain harmful chemicals like most commercial hair and skin products. I started making my own products from scratch; then I created a website and started selling online. I knew there was tons of potential for growing a business online.”
The company also has an active Facebook page with hair care tips.
Zalika Martin’s company Makeda Artistry offers multiple services, including makeup artistry, The Makeda Collection handmade jewelry line and motivational speaking. Internet marketing presented an industrious platform for Martin. “I chose the internet because it is a perfect venue that houses multiple people you can market to simultaneously.”
Martin told AboutIslam that the primary objective for her company’s services and products is to empower Muslim and non-Muslim women.
“Women, self-love and empowerment has always been important to me, especially considering my personal circumstances when self-love reminders and encouragement would have been greatly appreciated.”
“We at Makeda Artistry pride ourselves in offering the finest quality handcrafted products made with love. We at Makeda Artistry pride ourselves in offering the finest quality handcrafted products made with love. I tied together my natural talent and passion for makeup artistry and jewelry making because when you look good, you feel great!”
Muslim Women Entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurship continues to grow among US American Muslim women; the entrepreneurs provided some words of advice for women interested in starting their own businesses.
“Your voice is needed. Your vision matters,” said Feauxzar. “Don’t discount [your importance]. Join the team Muslimah Bosses. There is truly enough sun for all to shine under, alhamdullilah.”
“I have an awesome course called The Golden Muslimah that I made to show the average Muslimah how to turn her passion into a profitable business from home,” said Childs.
“Go for it,” said Martin. “There will be adversity and challenges in anything we do, don’t let being a Muslimah prevent you from seeking entrepreneurship.”