Women's Social Networking

Social networking is a great way for women to connect with each other.

Although women may use general social networks, sites specifically for women have increased and have created a place for them to connect and share advice. Women can use these sites to support one another through motherhood, meet their career goals, inspire each other or find others who share an interest.

Types of Social Networking Sites for Women

There are many different types of social networks and some of them are designed specifically to address the needs of women. While some networks are aimed at women who are parents or professionals, there are also general sites that provide a place to discuss multiple topics.

For Parents

Mommy and parenting social networks provide a place for women to discuss issues in pregnancy and share tips on parenting children of all ages. Some sites have online support groups mothers can join to help each other through stages of parenthood, such as potty training, starting school and trying to conceive. Other features may include blogs, photo albums, birth month clubs and chat rooms. If you want a break from discussing parenting, many of these sites also provide opportunities to discuss other topics.

For Professionals

If you're a female professional or entrepreneur, there are networking sites dedicated to helping you market your businesses, share creative ideas, get tips and connect to other women with similar interests. There are opportunities for meetings online and at a physical location, and some sites have a collection of learning resources to coach members on business management. Sites for professionals are not limited to business owners and can help women advance their current careers and inspire one another. Although there are free networks available, some services may cost a fee.

For General Users

You don't need to be a mother or business owner to take advantage of social networking because there are plenty of interesting sites available for women who just want to chat and have fun. Some general sites have sections to daily life topics, including beauty, hobbies, health, cooking, fashion, family, relationships and education. Sites can also focus on women of a specific age or in a geographical location.

Top Six Women's Social Networking Sites

Whether you need parenting advice, want to share your business ideas, or just want to socialize with other women, you have a variety of sites to choose from. Additionally, most of them are free. Although you can view some posted content without registering, you'll need to officially join to participate fully in the community.

  • CafeMom: This social networking site for mothers is run by the people who brought you ClubMom. It offers groups for moms who want to talk about particular issues, blog sites, and private messaging capabilities. While the focus of the site is on parenting, there are also opportunities to discuss cooking, hobbies, relationships, finances and health.
  • OnSugar: Formerly known as TeamSugar, this lively site allows women to create their own mini sites and blogs that they can share with other members. Users can rate each other's content, follow posts and comment on member pages. It also supports connectivity with Twitter and Facebook to help members connect with women they already know. Membership is required to view any content.
  • BraveHeart Women: Aimed at increasing personal growth, this site provides a place for women to inspire each other and collaborate on creative ideas. It offers forums, communities and groups, which enable women to get and share advice, post opinions, and get feedback on their ideas.
  • Fabulously 40: Aimed at women 40 and over, this site is the place to share beauty secrets, post movie reviews, get parenting help, find health tips and exchange recipes. Other features include blogs, weekly contests, photo albums and member groups.
  • Ladies Who Launch: Women who are entrepreneurs can use this site to promote their businesses and connect with other professionals. Members can also participate in webinars online and in meetings at a location in a nearby city.
  • Savor The Success: This free site for women entrepreneurs offers virtual cafes where members can learn from experts in public relations, social media and branding. Members can also connect with other women to participate in learning teams that meet online or in person.

Getting the Most from Social Networking

Women's social networking takes the idea of the social network a step further by linking up women with common interests, whether that interest is starting a business, raising a family or sharing craft tips and information. Although participating in these online communities can be fun, it can also be a big time drain if you don't have goals and priorities for what you actually want to get out of the networking opportunities you participate in. Shop around a bit and see what the different sites have to offer before you choose one. If you have friends who are already involved in social networking, you can ask them for recommendations to find the site that best fits your personal or career needs.

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