Moving goods or exporting to a new country has great trade-offs. This means the opportunity to foray into untapped markets, building brand new customers in addition to the existing base with the possibility of diversification. However, it requires a lot of research and understanding about the shipping company and the country to ensure any oversights that can prove extremely costly is avoided early on. This does not mean that everyone gets into the export space with prior knowledge and experience. It only implies that you need to give yourself enough time to understand their market, policies and trade conditions, economic conditions and assess the long term feasibility of carrying out your business. You also have to factor in your competitors in the market and study the differentiators.
Things to Consider Before Exporting
Without doubt, exporting goods to different countries is an exciting opportunity. However, before you decide to plunge neck deep into the Exporting business, it may be more practical to first short-list the top three companies overseas that you would like to do business with. It requires a lot of finesse, great attention to detail, and good networking since logistics is involved. Starting small with even one country at a time to get a foothold of the export practices can also help if you have time and support to test waters on a small scale.
Invest time to plan the entire operation starting with the basics such as understanding the documentation requirements to the country where the shipment has to be sent. Remember, your shipment has to clear Customs at any country and without the right documentation, there are chances your shipment will be rejected or delayed. Next you have to consider human resources such as the need to hire a team or reuse the existing resources by upskilling them. Upskilling again depends on whether your organization has the capacity or capability to deliver within a specific timeframe. There is cost factors involved in each step which must be taken into account.
Your logistics team also has a lot riding on them since they are responsible for talking to freight forwarders and other international moving companies to get you the best possible price for the service offered including packaging and on-time delivery between locations within the accepted timeframe. Some countries have very strict regulations regarding how goods should be labelled and declared if there are hazardous cargos coming in from the point of origin.
Inspite of doing everything else right, there are certain conditions over which you have no control. This means you need to insure your goods. There could be damage to cargo due to weather conditions, improper handling during loading and off-loading and many other instances. Your job does not end here. You must stay in constant touch with your customers and work on their feedback to enhance your services and most importantly, keep the communication effective and efficient with timely updates about their shipment.
Even with enough experience, there may be situations that can still require further clarity. The laws can change or can be interpreted in many ways. So it is essential to keep yourself abreast of any developments.