Emma Jones, founder of Enterprise Nation,explains why there’s never been a better time to get exporting and expand into new territories overseas. For the next couple of years, the UK will continue to have trade agreements in place with 27 EU states, and there’s a host of other nations knocking on the door to do deals. The opportunity abounds for entrepreneurs and business owners to sell into new markets y taking three steps:
Step one: Market research
Check to see if you already have international traffic coming to your site or downloading your products through reviewing Google Analytics or dashboards on platforms such as Amazon and iTunes. If you’re selling software and see ample US traffic from Google Analytics, pricing your product in pounds and dollars can quickly result in a percentage increase in sales.
Carry out more pro-active research through reviewing country and industry reports that can be accessed in the online knowledge centres of most of the major banks, and on the pages of Department for International Trade. What you’re looking for is facts and figures on target customer population, a review of the domestic competition, and financial assurance that you can make, ship and market the product at a rate that still delivers a profit.
Step two: Make sales
International trade has been significantly enabled through the growth of powerful trading marketplaces. When selling on sites such as Amazon, Etsy and Alibaba.com, you can literally start a business on Monday and be trading with the world by Wednesday.
Added to this is the ability to reach customers in new markets, in their own time zones, through global social media platforms including Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Google Translate has enabled real time translation (but resist this free tool when working on technical translation!) and Skype Translator enables video calls and Skype messages to be translated in real time, making local language customer service a real possibility.
Step three: Go Local
With sales on the increase, invest budget in visiting the territory and localising elements of your business such as an office address in the location through Regus virtual office products, and professional translation of your site and promotion materials.
Through the Go Global missions Enterprise Nation runs, I’ve seen at first hand the benefits of researching the market from on the ground, meeting potential customers face to face, and the payback of visiting a country to gain a deeper understanding of culture and requirements.
Join an Enterprise Nation trade mission to expand your business into new markets, reaching 1 billion+ potential customers.
• Amsterdam; 22-23 September with focus on homewares https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/go-global-amsterdam-a-focus-on-homewares-tickets-25861481387
• New York: 3 to 6 October with focus on retail https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/go-global-new-york-a-focus-on-retail-tickets-26964092326
• Hong Kong and China: 9-14 November with focus on e-commerce https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/posts/join-mission-to-china-hong-kong-to-witness-world-s-biggest-online-shopping-day
Click on the links to view full programmes and book your place. Limited places available.
Emma Jones is founder of Enterprise Nation www.enterprisenation.com