Taoke (Business), Uncategorized

A Brief Guide To Starting An Online Business For Chinoy Entrepreneurs

Family is the foundation for Filipino-Chinese businesses, and it’s in the culture to pass down the responsibility from parents to children. However, there are Chinoy families who also grew their wealth as working individuals. Their parents have chosen to climb the corporate ladders instead of starting a business because it’s much more stable and secure. 

Either way, it’s never too late to start a business and the good news: with today’s technology and platforms, you can also become a successful entrepreneur.

Take your cue from these Chinoy entrepreneurs who have managed their online businesses, Rachelle Ponce from Octavia’s Merchandise who resells footwear (Birkenstock) and Dianne Ching from Grimmie’s Nook, who sells pet items and treats. 

1) What Are The Steps You Have Taken To Start Your Online Business?

Shifting careers is not easy because you have to learn many things before starting in a new industry. According to Rachelle Ponce, “The first step is to find a reliable supplier, attend online seminars or webinars will help a lot, find a logistic partner that can import your goods from abroad to the Philippines, know your market, join various groups online and learn their strategy.”

It’s important to equip yourself with knowledge as it can help you build a foundation for starting a business.



(A screenshot of Octavia’s Merchandise Facebook page

On the other hand, Dianne Ching, the owner of Grimmie’s Nook, shared the importance of knowing about your competitors and product quality. It will give you a better understanding of the products you sell online. 

2) How Did You Transition From Your Previous Job To An Online Business?

Quitting your full-time job will give you a sense of freedom, but starting a business will also have its challenges. To overcome these, Rachelle advises to value financial preparation. 

“Transitioning is not easy, especially the financial part. Once you start a business, be prepared to have a financial crisis, monthly bills never stop, there may be delays in product shipment to the Philippines, and unstable income as there will be months of low to no sales, but that is part of the business just do trial and error on sellable products,” shared by Rachelle Ponce. 

It’s a different story with Dianne Ching as she and her partner started their business while still in their full-time job. Once they had a more stable footing, they decided to focus on their business. 

“While still at my previous job, my partner and I started our business as if it were our part-time jobs. Then, when our sales slowly moved up, I decided to let go of the fixed income and take the risks,” shared Dianne Ching. 

Indeed, taking risks can also be good as it can open new opportunities.


(A screenshot of Grimmie’s Nook Shopee page)

3) How Do You Maintain A Good Relationship With Your Clients?

One of the challenges faced by online business owners is the demands from their clients or customers. Nowadays, there is a high standard of customer service, and business owners should adhere to these standards. 

Rachelle shared that gaining her customers’ trust is the key to loyalty. “Always be ready to answer their questions, and be honest, so they will trust you as a seller and become a repeat customer,” she advised.


(A screenshot of reviews on Facebook for Octavia’s Merchandise) 

Another piece of advice every entrepreneur should follow is to maintain exceptional delivery service. According to Dianne Ching, she ensures that the delivery is always on time, along with freebies. On top of this, she also helps maintain an organized inventory management system to avoid mismanaging customers’ orders.

4) How Did You Motivate Yourself When Starting A Business?

Maintaining a business can also affect your mental health, as it’s a challenging industry. Motivating oneself can help you move forward and achieve your goals day by day.  

Common problems faced by small business owners are lack of sales and funds.

For Rachelle, having support helps her survive the hardships of being a business owner. “My family and fiance are very supportive of what I want to do, I have the best support system, even if I had a failed business before, they are still there to cheer me up whenever I think of giving up.”

(A screenshot of Grimmie’s Nook product collection on the Shopee app) 

For Dianne Ching, she keeps herself motivated by reminding herself that she is doing business for a purpose. “ I am able to hire staff  and thinking na may iba nang umaasa sa business ung pag nag fail may iba na rin ang affected, di lang kami”. 

With this in mind, she also thinks about the financial freedom she could get in the future through her business.

5) What Is Your Advice For People Who Want To Start An Online Business?

Before starting a business, you need to set realistic expectations. The advice from these Chinoy entrepreneurs can help you get started. 

It’s better to enjoy the process and not to think too much about the results. “My advice is to enjoy the process, don’t stress out if there are no sales in a day, just give your best every day. One day you will look back and see you are better than before,” shared Rachelle. 

For Dianne, you can start a business anytime, anywhere, but remember to be resilient because you will encounter problems along the way. It’s also helpful to seek from experienced business owners to have guidance. 

Final Reminder: Celebrate Small Wins! 

As a start-up business owner, you don’t have to sell numerous items right away. It also doesn’t mean your brand should be known immediately in the business world. It’s a process. 

You must celebrate small wins as it keeps you motivated and it reminds you of your goals. Reminding yourself of your daily achievements will help you stay inspired to be better. 


Leave a Reply