The Idea Of Trading Internationally Can Seem Intimidating. Only The Big Players Do It, Right?


By Thomas Vollrath, Managing Director, 123-reg

But actually, doing business abroad can be easier than many businesses perceive it to be. The internet has transformed things; a website can be your shop window in any number of countries. A physical presence isn’t required in each territory to sell there.

Add the impact of the expanding eurozone, plus the plethora of new business and banking services designed specifically for small companies trading overseas, and you may start to see international business as a crucial part of your strategy.

Why Look Abroad?

If your business is operating in a niche, with a relatively small domestic market, looking to other countries may help widen your audience whilst proving cost and time effective.
If the goods or services appeal to a broader audience, entering foreign markets also provides the chance to reach a huge number of potential new customers, boosting revenue and profits.

However, in a wider market there will be more competition from local companies. It can be hard to match up on price or fulfilment when shipping internationally, so you might have to alter your business’ proposition to have an impact.

The Basics

Online businesses can often start trading internationally quickly and at a very reasonable cost. At a basic level, businesses can add international shipping options and accept payment by credit or debit card. Currency conversions will be handled by the card issuer - you just need to deal with fulfilment.

If your business offers items which are unavailable locally, you can do reasonable business, after all, people are generally willing to pay a little more and wait a bit longer for items they can't get elsewhere. However, if you're lined up against local competitors in that market, you may need to go that extra mile to win business. Selling in the local currency is a good start. This brings... continued on page two >



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