Making the leap to start a small business is daunting, to say the least. But I had a crazy dream and the drive to see it through, so in 2013 I left my law career and created Reina Rebelde, a makeup brand focused on Latinas. Latinas are a significant population of cosmetics consumers, but corporate brands were selling to us in a way that lacked authenticity. I felt like they were taking us for granted. With Reina Rebelde, I wanted to create products and a brand that celebrates Latinas and our diverse heritage.
I had to learn so much to get this company started, but one of the most important steps I took was to make sure I was making the most of digital tools. My website is critical to sharing our mission and showcasing our products. I use insights from Google Analytics to help me understand changing shopping habits and demands so I can best optimize my website to meet the needs of my customers. As the business has grown, Google Workspace tools like Gmail, Google Meet and Google Drive have been instrumental in ensuring my team is always connected and engaged with customers, especially now that we’re all working from home.
The pandemic has shown us that it’s crucial to be able to quickly pivot and be flexible. I know that many businesses in my community are struggling right now: 32% of Latino-owned businesses have been forced to close due to COVID-19. So I wanted to share some resources, available in both Spanish and English, to help businesses learn how to best use digital tools and stand out online.
Google for Small Business is now available in Spanish. This tool gives small business owners a personalized plan with recommendations for the right Google products to help your business meet its goals.
Grow with Google has a library of free, on-demand workshops in Spanish, for business owners in a variety of industries and of all skill levels.
Grow with Google has Digital Coaches based in 20 cities who regularly host workshops in English and Spanish specifically designed to help Latino and Black business owners thrive online. Coaches like Mary Rábago in Phoenix, Arizona, teach Latino entrepreneurs how to build a searchable website, use Google tools to stay productive and use tools, like YouTube or Google Maps, to connect with customers.
If you're a local business that identifies as women-led, you can add the attribute to your Business Profile on Google. By doing so, your business can potentially appear for users on Google Maps and Search who search for queries like “women-led shops” or “women-led restaurants.”
Owning my own business has been such a challenging and rewarding experience. This International Women’s Day, I’m celebrating all of my fellow women business owners who are working hard to make their dreams a reality and their communities a better place.