The first step when you want to export products is to build up a good digital platform if you haven’t already done one. It will be the first glimpse of your brand and be a really good way to put it out in the market. Have a website that is clear, that represents your values, that describes your products and has all the basics information about your brand. It has to catch people’s attention and want them to ask you more about it. It is also advisable to have a multilingual website with the main languages of the markets you would like to ultimately reach out. It will help you get more opportunities. And remember that even if English is the international language by definition, not everyone speaks it.
Use Google Analytics
Once you have a solid digital platform, you can start investigating who your audience is. Google Analytics is a tremendous asset and it will help you understand who your customers are and where they come from. With this tool you can see which country your digital audience is from, their age range, what they like or do, and you will be able to build a few customer personas for your brand and adapt your strategy based on that.
Focus on a few markets at first.
When you are new to export it might be too overwhelming for you if you focus on too many markets at once. You should start with only one market or just a few. By doing so you will avoid being lost between all those markets and you will be able to truly commit to the market you picked and make it profitable. Use the data from Google Analytics to see what market triggers to most interest, and do research on your own too. If you’re unsure which market to choose, researching the markets is a good idea. You want to know if your product already exists there, what the competition can be, what is the average price of existing products, and if your product is unique, see if the market can be interested by conducting surveys or interviews for example. An efficient way of doing so is to actually go to the market and see by yourself what is out there. Bolst Global can support you with this.
Exhibit at trade shows
Trade shows are a really good way to get your brand or company known. It will help you get your brand out in the market. You will be able to meet new people in the same sector as you that could provide you with useful advice, you can meet many potential clients or distributors, and you can have a feel of what already exists in the sector and how you can adapt your product or how you can differentiate from the others.
Due diligence is key
When you want to access a new market research is key. You have to understand how you can sell your product in that specific market: will it by the means of a distributor or an agency? Or will you be selling directly to the retailers? This will depend on the market. For example in Switzerland there are only two retailers so you can directly work with them. Whereas in the Middle East, you might want to prefer working with an agency who knows the market very well and will be able to handle to whole sales process. These agencies can reach many markets and therefore will potentially bring a lot of opportunities for your products. In other markets you might prefer working with distributors. In this case do research on them to see if they target the right consumers, which brands they are already selling, if they have the right level of coverage and ask yourself: “Is it where I want my product to be?” Prefer a distributor who is truly passionate about your products, someone who will become a true extension of your company. Another important aspect is to make sure that the contract you sign with the distributors of your choice is in your favour. You want to be able to walk out of the contract if the distributor isn’t doing well enough for your brand.
Make sure you can keep up with demand.
It might seem obvious to many for you have to make sure you can keep up with demand. When you have just started your business it might be difficult to produce large quantities in a short amount of time. Therefore don’t accept orders you can’t physically produce as it might damage and compromise your export business. You want to prefer taking several smaller orders instead so you can actually meet those demands and don’t
loose your credibility. Get on to larger orders when you are ready for it and your business has grown enough and you have the means for it. If you need more advice or need some help developing your export business, please feel free to complete the contact form below and we’ll get in touch with you to see how we can help you.