What to consider first when Importing or Exporting for the first time
1. Be clear about your market and how to reach it
Analyse the size of your market, your competitors, your company image in the Country of Import or Export and plan your market entry strategy
2. Understand how to price your product
In order to determine the right price for a specific market you will need to analyse the cost of producing or importing, marketing, freighting, promoting and financing your product
3. Calculate the impact on your cash flow
You may need substantial funds up front and only receive payment at a much later date. It can leave a gap in your cash flow and put severe strain on your working capital.
4. Check for restrictions
Find out if there any export and/or import restrictions and if the product is allowed to be sold
5. Study the cultural impact of your product
Does the product fit the culture of the country? For example, does it conflict with religion, politics, etc…
6. Check the product standard
Do the product and the labelling comply with the standards of the industry
7. Don’t forget the warranty/product support:
Have a system in place for defective and/or damaged products and customer service
8. Plan your transport logistics
You must decide your options between a full container load or a consolidation, and whether to ship your goods by air or sea.
9. Know your documentation needs
Not having the right paperwork can result in an importer not being able to accept the goods and the exporter not being paid; and that is costly in terms of time and money.
10. Don’t forget your insurance
Depending on your commercial terms, you have to consider marine insurance, product liability insurance, transport insurance and goods in transit insurance including warehouse insurance.
Author : Corinne Campbell