There’s a reason that global markets remain an untapped opportunity for e-commerce merchants to increase revenue: Selling in another market is really, really challenging. Even the most seasoned e-commerce entrepreneurs have struggled to fully grasp the regulatory requirements and market complexities of the regions outside their domicile. Then there’s the fear of fraud, given that it’s almost impossible to know who a customer is from miles away.
Therefore, in order to achieve success, an e-commerce company should first assess its brand to ensure that it’s a good fit for another market. Is there ample demand in China for what you sell? Do your product descriptions translate well into other cultures? Are your ready to consider new methods of payment? If yes is the answer and you’re ready to take on the challenge of international expansion, the next step is to plan how to roll out e-commerce operations globally. The below-mentioned tips can help you do a successful launch:
Facilitate Cross-Border Transactions with Technological Integration
Cross-border transactions can be inefficient, expensive, and slow, but they are crucial to global trade. Commonly, banking infrastructures in hard-to-reach markets are unable to handle cross-border payments, resulting in non-uniform adoption of middle-man processes that stall or complicate transactions. The good news is new payment gateways are starting to shape cross-border payment requirements.
For instance, advanced payment processors help merchants take cards on the internet, integrate PayPal into their webstore, provide e-wallets to their customers, and offer hundreds of types of payment options. In addition, they’re offering to manage fraud for the merchant in their solution. Since several vendors have already integrated fraud-fighting technology that reviews each transaction using industry best practices, no IT resources or additional development are needed on the user’s end.
Develop Language, Pricing & Tax Compliance Strategy
The first impression potential foreign buyers will form of your brand will likely come from the language on your site. Straight translation won’t cut it: If you want to increase brand awareness, hire freelancers to translate copy. In addition to the website language issue, you’ll need to ensure your prices reflect local market realities. Consider displaying the price of each product in local currency and make sure costs are in line with target market expectations.
Also, you’ll have to comply with local tax regulations, so it’s important to invest in an accounting infrastructure. Taxes on international retail operations can be complicated, involving export regulations and nexus issues, so a tax compliance plan is key to reducing liability exposure in the case of an audit. Merchants can also look for tax incentive opportunities as they expand into new markets. India, for instance, has created special economic zones that welcome tech companies with sourcing assistance and tax incentives.
Go for The Kill with Localized User-Generated Content
Did you know 70 percent of people look at reviews and ratings before buying? If this stat tells you anything, it’s that people trust opinions of their peers instead of corporate descriptions – and they’re more likely to spend because of word-of-mouth. To increase consumer confidence in your website, integrate a way for people to leave reviews in their own language.
But what if you have several localized domains for your store, and someone writes a great review in Chinese? Well, it’s better to let everyone know. In such a scenario, you may want to translate the top reviews into additional languages to display on each iteration of your website.
The globe is rich with potential for e-commerce businesses. With a solid expansion strategy in place, you’ll be on the right path to cross-border success.