There’s no reason your growth strategy shouldn’t include exploring high ROI ventures abroad. As international markets increasingly open up, small businesses can take advantage of the global trade opportunities. However, you need a proper strategy to overcome the multiple challenges that many small businesses encounter when entering international markets. Here are the key concepts to incorporate in your international trade game plan for greater success:
- Deliver Strong Offerings
Offering a high-quality product is vital to successful entry into international trade. As a newcomer, you have to carve out a unique niche to beat established domestic manufacturers and other players that you encounter overseas. Don’t copy them, as your product won’t easily outperform what these players already have in the market. A strong, high-quality offering is what you need to stand a chance abroad.
- Research the Market Opportunity Extensively
To make the most of global trade opportunities, you have to anchor your strategy on extensive market research. There’s a ton of homework for small businesses to do here, and that entails scrutinizing the target opportunity and assessing the strength and weaknesses of your potential international and local competitors. Evaluate the product demand over there and develop a unique business proposition that justifies the intended foreign investment.
- Build a Robust Supply Chain
Wherever you venture overseas, you need a streamlined supply chain ready for your operations. Key considerations include management and logistics, whether you’re exporting your product directly from the U.S. to the target foreign locations or have contracts with international manufacturers to deliver the products on your behalf. There should be as minimal bottlenecks in your supply chain as practically possible. To ensure this, enlist partners with the capacity for steady shipments to your global customers and outposts. Significant supply chain problems can inhibit the fulfillment of early orders as your company begins to build momentum in the new market.
- Stay Up-to-Date on International Law
Your international business operations must be legally viable to succeed. That entails complying with three main sets of rules and regulations:
- U.S. laws
- Laws of the foreign country you’re exporting to
- International trade laws
To maintain strict compliance, you should keep up with frequent changes to these standards and rules. It would be best to bring on board a strong legal team that’s well-versed in compliance. Enlisting local advisors makes sense, too, as they can quickly update you on any domestic regulatory changes that can impact your business operations there.
- Build Strategic Local Partnerships
For help with last-mile logistics, you’ll need to collaborate closely with reliable local partners. Whether you’re looking to set up offices in other overseas locations or expand your existing market, establishing a network of trusted contacts and partners can simplify things in a potentially challenging new territory.
- Build a Winning Team
You need a strong team to help your company make the most of global trade opportunities. With the right people behind you, it’ll be a lot easier to successfully launch an ambitious or capital-intensive venture abroad. Here’s what you can do:
- Hire individuals with experience in export
- Offer your team actionable guidance on what to do for your business to go global
- Leverage Local Resources
Take full advantage of local resources to help make your international business aspirations a reality. Key resources available for small businesses include professional guidance and financial help for getting their overseas operations off to a good start.
This is where our professionals at the Economic Development Collaborative come in for small businesses eyeing growth through global trade opportunities. Contact us today to learn more!