If you’re struggling to increase your sales at home, or you just want to expand your reach, then trading internationally could be the perfect solution to your problems. However, there are some topics to consider before you go ahead and start exporting all over the world.
Are You Prepared for Exportation?
The first step is research. Without knowledge of the overseas markets that you plan to target, i.e. knowing what customers want, the potential competition, and any cultural, legal and tax issues, then you are doomed to fail.
Not only do you have to think about overseas, but you will need to think about any UK regulations too.
You should consider your plans for moving goods. There are lots of international courier services that you could use, including TNT, who offer expert knowledge in overseas shipping. You could, alternatively, set up an overseas base. If you decide on a base overseas, then you will then have to think about whether your employees will travel there, in which case they will need visas and work permits, or whether you will hire local employees, and what laws you need to be aware of.
You will need to think about overseas pricing and how you will process payment from customers abroad. Research your competitors and how much similar products are priced. You may find that in that particular market, it’s not affordable for you to sell your product, because the prices of your competitors are much lower than yours. You should consider what will happen if the customer fails to pay, and who is responsible for any taxes or bank charges.
How do you Trade Overseas?
Foreign markets are now more accessible than ever, but there are several different ways that you can trade overseas. Depending on your product, you can work with distributors and agents or other businesses, or you can establish a physical presence, or simply make your products available to buy online and begin marketing your website in those territories.
Talk to an Expert
It is a complex subject, so make sure that you speak to an expert before you begin trading. UKTI (or UK Trade and Investment) has offices all around the country that can offer helpful advice and assistance if you’re thinking of exporting.
For more help and advice on growing your business, head to the UK government website, here.