What are the benefits of sourcing products from overseas?
This is a really interesting question, and when I think back over the projects that we’ve been helping overseas brand owners with this year on their own product development and sourcing of suppliers, I think there’s a number of advantages that you can gain by searching a little bit further than your local domestic market for products and new, exciting things to bring to the market. One of the key things is the innovation and trends that looking beyond domestic markets could really bring you and allow you to bring product innovation, whether that’s something new, exciting flavours, that perhaps locally is just not possible to be produced. Or it could also be new ways of forming products from a formation point of view in terms of packaging as well, innovation and trends that are happening in other parts of the world that aren’t maybe currently in your market at the moment. But bringing them in could really give you an added bonus.
That can also lead to a second advantage, which would be having a competitive edge to your competitors in the local marketplace by being able to bring in and offer something different to what’s currently available, but where there is clearly a consumer demand for that kind of product or innovation or trend.
The other aspect to think about as well is obviously the balance between cost and quality of a new product. Now, it may be that local domestic manufacturing just isn’t a possibility for you anyway. But by looking overseas and being savvy about it, there are ways in which you can still find great products of a really good quality, but equally that match the commercials and the value chain that you need to have in order to have success in the marketplace. And so thinking about that and looking again at transportation costs as part of the factoring into the importation is also important. I’ve seen it where brands and companies can bring in great products, but then blow the commercials out of the water by a very, very expensive transportation methods.
So thinking about that and seeing how it’s possible to also bring product in is important in the equation with this. But looking at certain economies, for example, in the U.K., the British pound is very weak at the moment, making us a very attractive place to do business. If you are looking to buy product equally, there are great places in Europe, particularly Eastern Europe, where you can have fantastic quality products, but at a smaller cost base that might fit your market needs and your own commercial margins that are required as part of the business in doing and trading with various stakeholders.
The other thing I think not to forget as well is actually by sourcing and working with overseas partners from not just a professional but a personal basis, it can be very rich. You have to develop your communication skills and your negotiation skills as well as you’re working through different cultures, different viewpoints, different ways of doing business, which can be both very challenging at times, shall we say, but equally very, very positive experiences and enriching. And if you can work towards the ultimate goal of working together and transacting, then it can be another great way of being able to find benefits from working from partners who are not actually based in your marketplace.
So there you have it. I hope that was useful and drawing on our own experiences here at Bolst Global. As always, if you have any questions or looking for any support with your international trade, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Thanks for listening.