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When you first started your business, just getting it off the ground was challenge enough. As it’s grown and thrived there have been more challenges along the way but you’ve overcome them all and are finally ready to take your business to the next level.
We’re talking about expanding your markets and taking it global. If not global then certainly expanding to a wider audience. Your mainland sales will need to go further field into Europe, Asia and beyond. But what are some of the barriers and logistics that you’re going to have to figure out? In this blog, we take a look at how to transform your business from national to international.
Ask Yourself Why
What are the motivations for your business expansion plans? Are you bored? Is the business not making enough money with its current markets or does it just seem like the logical next step? There are no right or wrong answers but your reasons will have an impact on the amount of risk you’re willing to take.
Fear that your business is failing or not creating enough profit is going to lead you to take higher and perhaps less advisable risks. While a business that seems ready to conquer new markets will allow you a slower pace and therefore less risky roll out.
Once you’ve decided on your motivation it’s time to set some goals and start thinking about the practicalities.
You’ll need to consider procuring international shipping if you sell physical products and how that might work when shipping from your base. Might it be more practical to have a storage facility in the country or countries you’re planning on shipping to?
While English is the language of business around the world, having your website translated into your customer’s native tongue shows how highly you regard their support. Don’t use a free service, such as Google, get the job done properly with a company such as ILS Translations.
You’ll need to bare this in mind too when you consider how your customers will talk to you if they have a problem or are making inquiries about your product.
You may find that the answer to a lot of these issues is to open a satellite office in the country or countries you want to expand in. To do this, you’re going to have to understand the employment regulations in another system and get to grips with hiring practices.
All these things are perfectly do-able but require planning and forethought to make them happen. It’s an exciting opportunity to put your brand well and truly on the international map but you need to approach it in a way that’s practical and covers all your areas of exposure.
If you’re unsure where to start, talk to a business consultant with experience in business expansion and get all your ducks in a row before you start rolling out the changes. Get it right and you won’t look back, knowing that you’ve leveled up your business in the best way possible.