Are you thinking of charting the global waters with your eCommerce brand? The pandemic has already shown the massive reach of an eCommerce brand even in tumultuous times. The international consumer market is expanding at a rapid speed. The increasing consumer consciousness coupled with the presence of online platforms facilitating business across borders provides a range of opportunities that a brand must explore.
If you’ve saturated your home market, it’s time to go international and reach a global audience. However, this is easier said than done.
Here we’ll discuss some comprehensive ways to go international with your eCommerce brand.
Research your market
Before going all out on wooing an international market, research adequately to understand if your business will be successful on an international level. Knowing if the market is ready for your products or services is crucial to expand successfully. Begin by testing interest in your intended countries with Google Trends. Conduct a SWOT analysis of your competitors in the international market to identify gaps and find areas that need your expertise. Create focus groups that explore the core hesitations that your brand has with going international. Researching your market properly prevents you from wasting time and money and provides valuable insights into international markets.
Localize your store
Localization is the key to succeeding in an international market. To expand your business operations internationally, you have to analyze how you’re going to integrate your brand with the local culture and grow in that region. Preparing for an international market requires considerable time and effort. Is your website speaking the local language? Does it support local payment options? How nuanced is your site for international buyers? Every small detail must be curated to meet international standards, from product merchandising to transactions. To provide a unique and geography-specific shopping experience, brands must localize their website and consider trends and perceptions of a particular country.
Setup international payment options
Consumers in different markets usually have different payment preferences. While expanding globally, you must explore all the potential payment vendors that are available for partnership. Ultimately, you could lose out on sales if customers do not find their local payment options at the store. A smooth checkout experience is a central factor in every successful eCommerce journey. Expanded payment options could lead to increased sales. Find out the popular payment options in your intended region and provide these options to your customers. These vary from country to country, so it’s wise to keep a wide mix of payment choices to account for all preferences.
Manage your supply chain
Taking your brand international can pose a massive impact on your supply chain. You need to scale your international logistics & fulfilment process to meet customer demands accurately. You need to project the demand by SKU to plan inventory and warehouse capacity to promptly meet customer expectations. Warehouse management impacts operational costs as well as the speed of delivery. Create a well-tested strategy that increases the operational efficiency of your business. If you’re starting with worldwide expansion, it makes sense to tie up with a local fulfilment partner that services your target area. Conduct considerable research to tie up with authentic partners that help your business expand without tarnishing its name.
Check your shipping options
International shipping directly impacts the bottom line and customer satisfaction levels. A good customer experience is more than merely delivering goods. It also entails delivering the products within the promised date, and in a good condition. Therefore, it makes sense to partner with a local fulfilment vendor that can ship your orders faster in that country. There are plenty of local shipping companies that offer convenient, cheap, accurate and fast delivery options for international consignments. Be clear with your shipping charges for the international market and establish an easy returns policy. Specify the return policy details clearly on your website to avoid confusion and penalty, in extreme cases.
Prioritize website security
A poor browsing experience or a website that doesn’t prioritize customer data privacy concerns can never make it big in the international market. When catering to an international market, your website needs to fulfil security and customer privacy demands. Failing to do so will make it difficult to scale your brand in the global territory. Reassure your customers that their data is not used without their consent. Establishing a stronghold in a new market among a different audience is difficult. Addressing their issues will make your site trustworthy and easy to operate in the international market. Invest in a technology that protects users’ sensitive information and is not prone to cyber threats. Building your brand on top eCommerce platforms also helps curb this issue.
Adopt mobile commerce
Many emerging markets along with the evolved ones prefer mobile commerce. Consumers are relying on their phones to discover and explore new brands and websites. The need to match customer shopping preferences on mobile is now more than ever. Brands need to step up to deliver an exceptional customer experience on mobile. Today, it’s more than just having a mobile-optimized website. Brands should design a mobile-first site, build a mobile app, and provide a personalized shopping experience. The dramatic increase in smartphone users has compelled brands to launch their apps to cater to their audience. Leverage the advantage offered by mobile apps to expand your business in newer territories.
Expand your presence on social media
Social media is one such channel that transcends geographic boundaries and can catapult even a small brand to the limelight when used efficiently. It can be your big ally when it comes to climbing global markets. Create dedicated pages for different countries echoing their local ethos, language, culture, and other aspects. Social media has a huge potential of increasing your reach. Brands like IKEA have aced this space with their localized social media strategy. Tailoring messages on social media based on local preferences can have a huge impact on the audience. People associate with the brand, rather than seeing it solely as a ‘foreign’ commodity with zero local connections.
Taking your business global is one of the biggest challenges you can face as an eCommerce brand. However, the reward can be extremely lucrative as it opens a new market and audience to explore. Though the thought can be jittery, it is not an impossible mountain to climb. Being adequately prepared and remaining consistent with your goals can help you create a strong international brand. With proper planning and secured investments, you can take your brand to witness long-term global success.
If you’re contemplating building a global eCommerce brand that is backed by a solid platform, check out Citytech Software! Our websites are developed to meet the standards of the international clientele and for brands to scale their operations successfully. To see our work in detail and understand how we can add value to your business, visit www.citytechcorp.com.