Nowadays, it’s easier than ever to become a global business thanks to the reach of the internet.
By not restricting yourself to customers in your own country, you could increase the amount of business that you receive. However, there are extra considerations to make when trading with customers in other countries.
Here are just a few of the considerations that you may want to make.
Research into the demand
You need to be sure that there’s enough interest for your product in other countries. This involves doing your market research.
If the product is already popular in other countries, you may want to consider how fierce the competition is.
If there’s little competition, it’s possible that you may have identified a gap in the market – or you may find that there’s little to no demand for the product.
A few market research strategies that you can use to work out the demand include competitor analysis, surveys and focus groups.
Consider the currency exchange
Customers from other countries will be paying in a different currency.
You need to consider the currency exchange rate and adjust your prices accordingly. Many modern online payment platforms can convert the pricing for you, but you may want to offer your own separate pricing in some cases to factor in added costs like shipping.
When accepting foreign currencies, it could be worth setting up separate accounts such as an SGD account for accepting Singaporean dollars.
This could save you money in transfer fees by not having to transfer all the money you receive.
Consider the language barrier
While English is spoken all around the world, many people aren’t fluent.
It could be worth hiring the help of translators to create separate copies of your website for foreign customers as well as contracts and newsletters.
If you’re going to be speaking over the phone or in person with foreign customers, you may even need to hire an interpreter to help.
There are also digital translation tools that you can use – but you should be wary of the fact that these may not always be accurate.
Work out the best forms of marketing
Next, you should consider the best ways of connecting with your foreign customers. You may find that they favour different search engines and social media sites.
Depending on the demand for the product and cultural differences, you may also find that the way in which you promote your product differs.
Consequently, you may want to outsource a foreign marketing company to handle your overseas marketing.
Look into international shipping options
If you’re selling a product, you’ll need to look into international shipping options.
Slower shipping methods (i.e. by sea and road) are likely to be cheaper than faster shipping methods (i.e. by air). In many cases, you’ll want to use a combination of different delivery options to get it to your destination.
There are courier companies that can handle the whole process for you. It’s worth shopping around to find the most reliable company and best pricing.