How Can You Start And Run An International Online Business Successfully?
About 20 years ago, starting a business that could offer products or services to customers globally would have been unthinkable without having a very large access to capital and a huge investment in logistics.
But now with online businesses, cloud accounting, drop shipping and so many other third party services it’s much easier to start a business that can reach internationally and span across many different markets. Now there still can be a lot of things to research such as taxes and other legal implications that come with international businesses. But there are a few basic ways you can setup your business and get started immediately.
Conduct Some Market Research On What You Want To Sell
Selling products or services to an international customer base can be a little more tricky than just selling locally because the markets can greatly differ from one country to the next. You’ll want to carefully research each country you want to market your product in to see whether there’s really a demand or potential demand there, and you can do so by either checking on social media or using survey methods. As with every other business, you’ll want to get to know a little more about your customers when you do this so that you know what kind of experience they’re looking for when shopping at your online business.
Invest In A Professionally Designed Website
Giving your customers the best shopping experience and keeping your online business organized is heavily dependent on the kind of website you have. It used to be that you would either have to pay a lot of money to a web designer to do all the coding and set it up on a dedicated server, or try and learn how to do all of that yourself in addition to buying a domain name. But now there’s a lot of options out there for buying a website with already made professional templates and interactive pages that you can usually setup yourself. There are usually still costs for the domain name and server hosting, but with many cloud hosts and scalability involved with server purchases nowadays, the cost is much lower than it once was. There are still times when it may pay to hire an independent website or app coder.
Assemble Your Team And Set-up A Money Payment System
As with every other business, you will have important clients or even employees and contractors you’ll be working with. Whether it’s for purchasing supplies, subscribing to business to business services or just regular field work, building and maintaining these relationships with your client is extremely important. You also want to have an accounts receivable and accounts payable system that is flexible for everyone. Be willing to pay freelancers by their preference, you might find yourself paying someone in India by direct deposit and transferring money to the Philippines for another worker. You also will want to have a payment system that can accommodate your customers since they may have very different electronic payment options depending on which country they live in.
Figure Out How To Get The Maximum ROI On Your Marketing Strategies
With online businesses you have to market and build your brand through many different tools. Search engine optimization (SEO) has been the main marketing method for online businesses over the years both through organic searches and pay-per-click ads. But email marketing, video ads and social media campaigns have also emerged as great ways to build links to business websites. Different methods have different costs, so you have to determine which one will work best for building sales leads and yielding the highest return on investment (ROI) in doing so. But the advice most experts offer is not putting your marketing strategy in just one basket.
Choose The Right Bookkeeper Or Accountant
Last but not least, running an international business will require having a reputable certified accountant to make sure you’re complying with all tax laws. Plus registration requirements, licensing and other international partnerships can be subject to different codes, so it’s important that you find an accountant or accounting firm that knows international tax laws. There are online based accounting firms that can offer bookkeeping and tax filing services at an affordable price for smaller businesses.
In conclusion, being online does give you a lot more flexibility in who you can work with and how you plan to sell your products and services. You just need to be aware of financial limitations that certain countries may have and how international exchange rates and sales taxes could affect how much you get paid.