If you operate an ecommerce business, the world is at your fingertips and global markets offer the tantalizing promise of visibility and increased sales.
"International expansion is a great way to mitigate risk and depend on a single market for all your sales," noted Chris Vincent, global CEO of
"Increasing sales in international markets is a great way to offset weaker sales at the national level if you sell unique and in-demand products," he told the E-Commerce Times . price. "
How to start may seem cloudy, though. With that in mind, here are some tips on how to expand your sales globally.
1. Know why you are going globally
Before you venture away from your home market, it is important to know why you are doing it. This means, in part, that you must have the impression that your products will sell elsewhere.
"The global expansion is a great way to grow your business," said Peter Lukomskyj, senior vice president of products at
"That said, do not assume it's only because you are successful in your home market that you will succeed abroad," he told the E-Commerce Times . "Do you have something unique or different enough so that there is a lot of demand? Test new markets to determine if they are ready for your products, if your price resonates, and if you can meet buyers expectations for overall customer experiences. "
Although it may take a long time, doing homework before expanding overall will pay off in the end.
"If you're right, you could be this innovative company that is generating a new trend," Lukomskyj noted. "If you're wrong, global expansion plans can erode margins quickly."
2. Work on logistics
It is important to know how you will fill and deliver the products to customers once you have them in a new market. Do not expect to have made your first sales to understand what you will do next.
"A company faces many challenges when it decides to market, sell, satisfy and support its customers outside the countries where they are used to doing business," said Lukomskyj.
"The first decision that a company must take is to sell its current country and ship it to the customer, or to set up operations in target countries with a fully localized local currency experience. , in local currency., "he said.
3. Know your market
Make sure you spend time knowing the culture of a country before you embark on a market outside your home country. These ideas can make the difference between selling to customers and alienating them.
"Understanding the local environment and its standards is a major problem," said Lukomskyj. "Buyers from other countries can quickly be turned off if their local customs are not respected. Black Friday would be a foreign concept in France, just as Singles Day would be a foreign concept for North Americans."
You will want to locate as much as possible your marketing, sales, distribution and distribution efforts so that potential customers feel comfortable buying from you.
"We advise our customers to locate their online offering in all international markets where they enter if they want to compete with local retailers and online marketers," said Vincent of Practicology.
4. Work Out Payments
It is important to know how you will make the payments and to make sure that the processing of your payments is relevant in the country you are targeting.
"It is also essential to know how people make payments: while North Americans use credit cards extensively, other countries use direct debit, online transfer and even more frequently. billing, "notes Lukomskyj.
5. Get clear on taxes and fees
One of the most common mistakes companies make on a global scale is not to investigate taxes and fees in the markets they enter.
"The most serious mistakes are those that have the greatest financial impact," said Lukomskyj. "Do not misunderstand local tax regulations or ignore how to repatriate sales revenue to the first legal entity in your business. Some countries require a local partner to own a percentage of the legal entity selling goods in that country. . "
6. Partner Up
You do not have to go it alone to become global. Do not be afraid to look for marketing, sales, distribution and distribution partners who know the local markets and can help you improve your business there.
"Even if you are in a large, well-equipped company to enter new markets, find partners to help you understand every major component – marketing, sales / e-commerce, flourishing, support, "advises Lukomskyj. ]
"There are proven approaches to testing new markets to see if your brand will perform well," he added.
7. Focus on good customer service
The success of selling globally – like selling everywhere – is about providing good customer service. The better customer service offered by your company, the more you will be able to overcome the unavoidable obstacles that accompany the process of expanding your reach, suggested Philip Rooke, CEO of
"It's all about customer service," he told the E-Commerce Times. "In the end, you do not want people to realize that it's an international business that sells to them."