Expanding your business to the international market is the best way to scale its sales and, therefore, profitability. Apart from attracting many more new customers, going global allows you to increase your market influence, gain a competitive advantage, and diversify your assets.
However, it is crucial to realise that such a large venture also necessitates conducting preliminary research, in-depth audits, and appropriate preparations in order for it to be successful.
In this article, we will discuss several key aspects of international business expansion you need to consider before deciding to grow your business globally.
Apart from conducting market research in a target country and evaluating the actual demand for your product, you also have to find a reliable shipment service, hire additional staff and local contractors, and adjust your marketing strategy.
Below, you will find more detailed information about expanding your business successfully.
When expanding your business to another country, you will have to start by conducting market research in order to better understand the target market’s needs and preferences.
The main goal of this analysis is to learn about the country’s culture and traditions, analyse the existing competition, and identify potential risks.
Also, market research will help you develop the right strategies and avoid potential pitfalls.
There are many ways in which you can conduct market research.
Some companies use qualitative market research tools, such as focus groups or surveys, while others prefer to use quantitative tools such as customer segmentation and regression models. In any case, you should spend enough time analysing the results.
Finding a Reliable Shipping Service
The next important step when expanding your business internationally is finding a reliable shipping service provider. You can always outsource this process and, for example, learn how to start Amazon FBA in the UK or any other country.
However, you can also organise it yourself.
Basically, all international shipping services can be divided into two categories: air freight shipping and sea freight shipping.
Air freight shipping services are more expensive but faster than sea freight shipping services.
They can be used for small-scale operations when sending packages within a few hours or transporting them within one day.
In contrast, sea freight shipping services are less expensive but slower than air freight shipping services.
They can be used for large-scale operations when sending packages over several days or transporting them over one week.
When deciding on the best transport method, you should always consider the potential sizes of your packages and how far you are willing to ship them.
For example, if you plan to start selling your products from China to Australia, it would be cheaper and faster for you to ship them by sea than by air.
However, if you want to expand your business from China to America, it would be much more efficient for you to ship them by air since it will take only several days for them to reach their destination.
Evaluating Demand for Your Product
Once you have conducted extensive market research and analysed the results, you will be able to determine whether there is a demand for your product in a particular country.
However, this is not enough.
Before you start production, marketing and sales, you will also have to determine whether the demand is high and steady enough to support major investments.
If you are planning to sell your product online, it is not enough to just look at the number of local consumers who have visited your website.
You will also need to analyse their online activity and see how much they are willing to pay for your product.
If you want to be sure that there is sufficient demand for your product in a specific country, you may want to consider conducting additional market research to confirm the initial findings of your analysis.
Moreover, you may want to conduct a test launch and start selling your products there in limited quantities.
This will allow you to make some minor tweaks to the price, packaging, marketing materials, etc., before you actually start selling in bulk.
Hiring Additional Staff and Local Contractors
In addition to taking care of issues related to the actual shipment of your goods from the warehouse to your target country, you will also need to hire staff members who will maintain and manage the logistics once products arrive at their destination.
You should search for reliable employees who have experience in this field so that they will be able to successfully handle all logistics-related issues that might arise during transportation.
Apart from transportation costs and productivity fees, you must also take into account all other expenses associated with hiring additional staff members and managing the logistics process in a new country.
These include salaries, tickets for travel expenses, visas, temporary office rentals, local taxes, etc.
Therefore, it is essential that you calculate all potential costs before actually starting working in a new country.
Adjusting Your Marketing Strategy
When expanding your business to a new country, you will also need to adjust your marketing strategy to better appeal to the local audience.
While your existing marketing materials may be perfectly relevant for your current clients, they may not necessarily be relevant for the market in the target country.
For example, if you are planning to start selling your products in China, it is essential that you localise your marketing materials so that they will resonate with the audience from a culture-specific perspective.
The main goal of this localisation is to better understand the target market’s needs and preferences and to tailor your marketing messages accordingly.
Apart from ensuring that you have the right marketing messages, you will also need to localise the language and design of your website, packaging, labels, etc.
Basically, you should do everything in your power to ensure that your products will be perceived as highly valuable and relevant by potential customers.
Expanding your business to a new country is not simple and involves taking many important steps.
Apart from conducting extensive market research and analysing the results, you will also need to evaluate the actual demand for your products, find a reliable shipping service, hire additional staff members and local contractors, and adjust your marketing strategy.
This is why it is essential that you carefully plan your international expansion strategy before actually starting operations in a new country.
In addition, you should always keep in mind the fact that even if you are expanding your business successfully on a global scale, you may still have to deal with many problems related to logistics, transportation, and other issues that can arise when operating abroad.
Therefore, it is essential that you carefully plan for potential problems to successfully overcome them when the time comes.