As a small business, growing your customer base is likely one of the goals at the top of your list. Though domestic demand may be enough to keep you afloat, small businesses can often find a faithful clientele internationally.
Often, small businesses will face less competition in international markets. With a greater product uniqueness abroad, you are more likely to find a higher demand, increasing your profitability.
But how can you attract this international demand as a small business?
Maintaining a Strong Online Presence
A strong online presence is incredibly key to attracting international customers. Having an online presence is important for any small business, but when it comes to international customers, this is likely to be the only way they can access your business. Though it might require a bit more work from your employees, the payoff will be clear.
Having a website is important to lay out what international customers can purchase from you. Ensuring it is clear how international buying and selling will be conducted with your small business is necessary.
If this information isn’t clear, international customers won’t stick around.
Furthermore, international customers can only be marketed to online, so a strong social media presence is vital. Otherwise, how will you make sure international customers know your products or services are available to international consumers?
Addressing the Language Barrier
One of the greatest issues when it comes to international selling as a small business is the language barrier. Though you may be able to speak a few languages, it’s unlikely you will be able to speak the language of every possible international customer.
In this case, it can really help to hire external companies to provide you with translation services. You should use translation services for all online sites. Whether this means using translators for websites, or an app localization service, small businesses will need this.
Of course, this is more difficult for small businesses, but this investment will show its worth in the return international customers bring.
Keep Worldwide Shipping Costs Low
International shipping, of course, will be more expensive than domestic shipping. Due to this, international customers may be less likely to buy from international small businesses.
Therefore, it is important to keep shipping costs as low as possible so you can compete with domestic businesses.
To keep worldwide shipping costs low, it is important to make sure you know the shipping laws for the countries you will ship to.
Small businesses can achieve lower costs by buying postage supplies in bulk. In a similar vein, small businesses can often negotiate shipping companies down for lower prices. Therefore, making sure you have great skills as a business owner is key.
International shipping is often priced on weight. Due to this, making sure you are as efficient as possible with your shipping – i.e. small boxes, lightweight insulation – can really bring costs down.
As a small business, reaching out to international markets may seem too expensive. But, played right, the revenue you draw in will make the costs seem small in no time comparatively.