An International E-commerce Guide to Selling Globally
There are countless benefits selling your products online especially when your product goes international. This global style of business gives you an exceptional opportunity for your business to thrive exponentially.
While you may be worried that internet is a major player in selling globally, you should be well aware that recently more and more people are now using internet. In fact, over 4.5 billion people uses internet around the world.
You may have “exhausted” your local market, looking for opportunity to explore an international market or weighing up options available to magnetize more consumers online before erecting a physical structure in the foreign location. Instead of sitting down contemplating, now is the time to take action.
You should find a way of getting a share in the ever growing global e-commerce market. To do this, international marketing strategy should be applied. That is why more is needed to start an expansion into a foreign market to be successful.
If you want to start, go through the detailed guide on how you can globally expand e-commerce. It is very important to remember that different approach for different markets should be the decision at the international market level. Things that can help you are:
1. Let Extensive Market and Product Research be the Ground Work of your business.
Spot your desired market: you don’t need a flamboyant or costly analysis and consultation at the very first. You are to compare your data with the market of your choice by spotting certain location where you can get plenty buyers with conversion rates and whose order value is more than average.
Make in-depth online research: On spotting your desired market, start developing your strategies by making extensive research online. With the help of Google trends, you can perceive what potential customers in the location of your choice are interested in through their google searches. This will make it possible for you to find fitting themes and familiarize yourself with search keywords from Google trends. Also, you will be able to evaluate how much and how well certain, probably related, products are sought for by your potential customers.
Other thing to keep watch on are your competitors who are already offering your products or similar products. Research them and see what they are doing right and wrong, then appraise your products and services to balance the loopholes.
Employ software tools: because of the fact that the word is going more and more technological, many online platforms and sophisticated tools that are simple and cost effective are now available for anyone. Software that can help sellers to gain insight into markets are widely available. They can help you peer into any competition, potential gains, target market and help you to make necessary adjustments in e-commerce markets.
You will be able to have a solid market selection that is based on data found and will be able to predetermine what service or product will be bestselling in a foreign location.
2. Prepare Your Business Strategy, Business Operation And Legal Matters
Choose the right place for your market: you should ask yourself “what form will distribution of my products take?” “What about having a running online store?” “Is my online store Shopify based?” Answering these questions will help you find the right place for your market. Each of the questions can be approached uniquely. These will be mentioned later.
More responsibilities: the more the expansion in your business the grater the responsibilities. Check through yourself if only you can handle all the tasks related to your business or you will be needing a helping hand. And remember that additional hands requires additional space and financial commitments.
You may want to use the services of outsourcing firms in this regard.
Budgets and financial standings:
Weigh up your abilities when it comes to finances and set up a fitting budget for your size. You can have a separate budget for local markets and international markets.
Learn about legal terms and conditions of the targeted location. Legal matters binding currency exchange, customs services, duties and taxes of different locations especially when you sell online internationally. A more careful evaluation of legal matters involves getting informed about data protection policy, tariff plans, insurance policy, monetary exchange and payment options available to a specific location.
For example, PayPal has suspended receiving payments for account holders in some countries. An example of such country is Nigeria. If you happen to have your business in such country and wants to go globally, you may not put PayPal as a payment solution gateway.
Handling shipping, returns and customer care services:
An important assignment when it comes to selling globally is caring for the needs of your customers. It includes, but not limited to, responding to inquiries, handling shipments and shipping, and allowing customer grace period to return products when they are not satisfied.
Delivery expectations should be simple and well spelt out. You should have a return policy that is quite standard. You may want to choose between replacing the products and refunding the customer’s money. It will be wise to set a period limit for returning products and weigh up cost that will be accrued in the process of restocking and redelivering the products.
Also, your customer care service should be given a good thought. Will you offer a 24/7 customer care services? Or is it going to be based on business time and business day of the location? In what language will the customer support be provided? These questions should be answered when planning your customers’ service support.
3. Explore the Market
If you are contemplating selling your products on Amazon internationally, you will later discover that it is not a complex thing. Here are the few steps that can guide you to start selling internationally on Amazon:
- Make personal findings. Then decide the product and for which market location on Amazon you will be selling.
- Substantiate and restructure your analyses using Amazon tool.
- Make an Amazon seller registration, then make a list of your products.
- Choose whether you want to use Fulfillment by Amazon or Fulfillment be Merchant method.
That’s all! You are good to go.
If you don’t want to use Amazon, you can choose eBay as an alternative means of selling globally. To start selling on eBay, below are what are necessary:
- Have a recognized and authentic eBay account.
- Ensure you have a registered PayPal account.
- Substantiate and restructure your analyses using the research tool designed for eBay.
- Enlist your products under appropriate product categories. Please note that there are some categories that have international sales as an exemption.
- Set and allow shipping services to specific places for each list of products.
- Choose your region of supply.
Simple right? That’s it.
Unlike the earlier mention options, having an international online market using Shopify is a little more of work than others. However, one reason you should try Shopify is that it let you have sales of products to a targeted market. Some find it hard to start using Shopify but you can try it by following the steps below.
- Create a Shopify account
- Get a subdomain for the international location form your existing store or get a fresh domain.
- Localize your new domain or subdomain in terms of prices of your products, currencies available, contact information of the seller, time zone and so on. By doing this, your new domain will be optimized.
- Try to get the location of people visiting the page and direct them to the product of their choice or products that are appropriate by using IP redirect.
- In your new domain or subdomain, make an adjustment to accommodate the target country in Google search console.
And that’s all about it. You can start selling globally.
Your personal online store: since it is your desire to get an international attention and audience for your market by means of online store, the very next and important thing to do is to localize your business. This means you are to adapt your business to your prospective customers by imagining what you would have been interested in if you were to be the one buying. This will help you to offer a fulfilling and valuable buying experience by honing your online store for the targeted location in the international market.
While this guide is an international e-commerce guide to help you sell globally, let briefly see some steps to localizing your e-commerce website. These are:
- Present and enhance shopping experience with multiple languages.
- State categorically that your accept buying orders from anywhere around the globe.
- Let the prices of your products be in currency that is locally circulated.
- Regulate and make a standard of your products by using product identifiers. For instance you may use GTIN lookup or Asinlab to convert ISBN or other codes of your inventory.
- Let your customers know you have more than one payment option and select which you most preferred.
- Have a custom website for each of the markets ensuring each has local domain name.
- Ensure that you have well-structured plans for shipping and returns.
- Prepare and provide a suitable customer care support service.
Remember that there are countless benefits selling your products online especially when your product goes international. That is why you should not miss out of such amazing benefits. Start selling globally today.