5 Things to Remember When Entering New Geographic Markets
Expanding your e-commerce business globally is an exciting and potentially lucrative move for any brand. You can extend the life of your existing products and services by finding new markets to sell them in, reduce your dependence on any single market, and finally escape the wrath of operating from within a single, fluctuating region. That being said, learning how to take your company global is quite an undertaking. Successfully penetrating the global e-commerce market, poised to increase its sales by nearly 250 percent and hit the $4.5 trillion mark within the coming years requires research, effort, a global marketing strategy, and good faith.
Think you have what it takes to grow your business? Here are five things you must remember if you wish to generate optimal results and returns:
#1 – Rome wasn’t built in a day… and your global e-commerce empire won’t be either
Want to know how to expand your e-commerce business globally? It’s as simple as starting small and taking it one step – and one territory at a time. The key to growing your business is in engaging in research to determine whether a particular geographic market will respond to your offering, who you’d be selling to (who your target audience is), what their budget limitations and purchasing power entails, and who your competition would be. Finding the most relevant data can be laborious, but it doesn’t have to be. There are plenty of enterprise growth solutions out there, including machine learning and AI-based software that collects and analyzes data on potential new markets, so you can pick the best market to enter first, while armed with the most informative data to get you off on the right foot. Statista, eMarketer and eCommerceIQ are great, helpful examples.
#2 – Different countries have different cultures, customs and regulations
If, up until now, you’ve only marketed your offering in a single market, you may find yourself surprised to discover that the buyers in each geographic market are motivated to purchase in very different ways. Cultural, social, regulatory and economic differences influence how a shopper is attracted to an item earmarked for sale, and how they’ll go about acquiring said item if they find themselves interested in it. For instance, the same bicycle sold as a cost-effective method of transportation in India, might sell better as an eco-friendly and elite transportation alternative in Southern California, with pricing adjusted accordingly.
#3 – You’ll likely have to make adjustments to your marketing strategy and content as well
As part of your global marketing strategy, you’ll need to analyze your existing marketing activities and content to ensure they resonate with your soon-to-be-penetrated geographic market. You’ll likely need to localize your strategy and content so that they are understood and internalized in any language, and your brand is appreciated as a valuable addition to the local e-commerce scene. This includes translations, formatting, image modifications and more. The more your content is in tune with local intentions, the more likely you are to grow your business with marked success.
#4 – Networking is key
Building relationships in new geographic markets takes time and effort, and its helpful to make connections with relevant industry players as early as possible. Participate in international trade shows, conventions and conferences, to meet and potentially collaborate with distributors, shippers, suppliers and other “movers and shakers” in your intended new geographic market. This will enable you to discover competitors’ strengths and weaknesses, find more affordable fulfillment solutions and position yourself as a trustworthy and valuable addition to your market of choice. That being said, when networking, be sure to assess the quality of the services on offer. While your customers may demand lower prices, they will most certainly prefer to obtain their purchases on time and in one piece, even if it means paying a little more for shipping and other services.
#5 – Delivering a seamless cross-border shipping experience is essential in every market
Ask your potential future customers in any market: the allure of buying the item they want from a vendor in any international market is strong, but if the shipping experience is less than seamless, they’re more than likely to bounce. Shoppers want a smooth, transparent and flexible cross-border shipping experience. 85% of customers want delivery to be reliable, and 66% want it to be timely, regardless of routing concerns, weather conditions, bureaucratic red tape and any unexpected costs that pop up along the way. And, as a retailer, you most certainly want to take your business global in the most efficient, and customer-pleasing way.
Partnering with Ladingo is a surefire way to successfully expand your e-commerce business to new geographic markets. Ladingo is the enterprise growth solution that takes the hassle out of the international shipping of all-sized items to any geographic market – through container sharing. Ladingo’s cloud-based e-commerce shipping solution includes an innovative platform that connects online retailers, ocean freight forwarders and customers to enable the shipping of purchases of all shapes and sizes in shared containers. The platform knows how to optimally load the containers with existing purchases AND deal with regulation, customs and taxation issues, enabling the B2C e-commerce retailers like you to successfully enter new geographic markets, with minimum things to remember on your own.
Contact Ladingo for more information on our e-commerce shipping solutions and learn how to grow your business globally, today!