What is required to Expand your Business Internationally?

After a period of sustained growth, you might be considering making your company a global one. Businesses of all sizes can branch out into the international market. However, you should be aware of the economic, financial, trade and personal implications of global expansion. 

Firstly, make sure your business is ready for international expansion and the challenges that come with it. As the business owner, are you prepared to move abroad to monitor the new branch’s growth and progression? Bear in mind that you will also need to learn the local customs and potentially a new language to manage an international business. 

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Finding the right partners and team can significantly help with the move to another country. Hire a full-time translator if you do not know the language and outsource accounting and tax functions. You also need to assess whether you have enough money and financial support to make this expansion. 

Be flexible and willing to change direction if things don’t go to plan. Remember, you are targeting a whole new customer base, and with that comes different cultural traditions, customs and consumer behaviour. Do your research, look at the data and apply it to your business plan.

You need to localise the international version of your original business plan. Consider the different cultural, governmental and economic conditions in your chosen country. Is this the right location for a branch of your business? Outline your short-, medium- and long-term goals and establish how you will achieve them. 

Moreover, make sure you are legally compliant with the new country and their laws and regulations. Get familiar with the local customs and read up on the history of trading there. Background knowledge can help you to engage in conversation with the locals and develop a local team. Try to build relationships with a local bank, which can help you understand the foreign currency and tax regulations.

You will encounter challenges when setting up a business abroad. Make sure your brand description translates accurately, and your products are fully localised. Bear in mind that many countries have a slower pace of life compared to the US business world. Prepare for a longer timeline in your business plan. Finally, research the local competition and ask yourself why local consumers should choose your product over one made in their home country. You will have to work harder to persuade international customers that your product is trustworthy and valuable to them. 

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.