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Published on July 25th, 2013 | by Aira


How To Start Thinking Like An Exporter And Grow Your Business Overseas

Each and every country in the world will differ in growth rates, meaning in one country your business may be booming, yet in another it may be failing miserably. For this reason, many business owners are constantly looking at directing new business to new international markets.

Trading in different areas gives both small and big businesses the opportunity to grow and develop their business and brand.

During June, we had our national Export Week – the clear message from this week was:

If companies want to grow, it is essential they look overseas to where the growth is.

However, when businesses hear of worldwide opportunities in countries like Brazil, China, India and Russia, the prospect of where to start can be rather daunting. To succeed in the trading world, you need to start thinking like an exporter.

Use what is on your Doorstep…

More than a third of all companies that attended Export Week had never exported before, meaning they had little knowledge on the subject. The reasons why non-exporting companies attend such events is to get information on international trading. They want to learn how to get started and which country is best to target for their market.

There are many places business owners can get information on exporting and they should not be afraid to use everything on their doorstep. Attend as many events as possible and even consider speaking to other business owners to get friendly advice from them.

Protect what is yours…

When considering trading overseas, it is likely you will have many different worries. One of the main worries you have will probably be if your business is protected.

In some ways, the way we do business in the UK is quite similar to how it is carried out when exporting abroad. To ensure you are protected, you should register your trademark and protect your intellectual property in the UK.

Once you are fully protected in the UK, it is then time to start looking at trading overseas. It is important once you do begin trading overseas that you also protect your intellectual property there as well.

You’re Just a Small Fish in a Big Pond…                                     

When it comes to planning the next step of the big international move, you may start to feel like a tiny dot in a big world – trust me this is a scary prospect. However, don’t let this thought put you off.

The way to succeed when moving trade overseas is to build up an international contact list – don’t worry, you will not have to do this alone.

For those small businesses stepping out into the big scary world alone, you will be able to employ help to find international contacts by using the UKTI team in the overseas embassy. UKTI will help arrange meetings with potential buyers both overseas and in the UK.

Understand your Finances…

One of the biggest put offs to new international traders is the financial aspect. Worried companies often ask how they can finance their export plans and what if the dreaded happens – what if they don’t get paid for their goods and services.

By receiving professional advice, you will learn about working capital, bonds and credit insurance to reduce financial risks overseas. Having such knowledge is essential to understand cash flow differences for different markets and how to secure a safe method of payment for goods and services.

You will also have to learn about the different tax implications when trading overseas and how this may affect you.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help as there will be many people in the same situation as you are.

About the Author: Kerry works on behalf of IM Exports who offers export packaging services to those businesses who are moving trade overseas. If you are considering on trading overseas, take a look at this full list of services you may need:

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