Roadmap To Export.

6 Steps To Simplify The Exporting Process.

1 – BE READY

Are you ready to export? How could you get ready? Sometimes, it is hard to know whether your business is ready or not! Until you know all about exporting, it would be hard for you to do a self-assessment. And, so we offer our experience and will work with you to review your current business situation so you can determine when and how to export. You will also learn the areas of focus before you start on your export business.

2 – DO RESEARCH

Be sure to find a market/country that loves your product. There are many countries out there who will love your product. It’s a matter of research to know that you are focusing on the right target country for your situation. While many will tell you to “Do your research”, it is not obvious how to do your research. Your product is unique, and your ideal consumer is unique, the sales channels, marketing in country and sales positioning is unique for your business model in that country. The countries that you decide to spend your time with need to be the right choices. So, contact us for a free checklist of research sites, research questions, ideas and suggestions. And, don’t forget to ask your trusted associations, peers and friendly competitors for their suggestions.

3 – GET PAID

This is a real and a perceived risk of exporting. Use these tips: There are many forms that successful exporters have used. Some companies require that they get 50% down with a PO. The remaining 50% payment may be required before the product ships. Nice, huh? After you get to know the buyer, and trust them, then the second 50% could be on terms. Letters of credit can be done but get your banker lined up to do the work for you. There are very inexpensive insurance policies to guarantee that you do get paid. EX/IM bank, is not a bank! EX/IM is an insurance provider, backed by the US Government, that provides guarantees that the buyer will pay you. They also provide working capital support. Check with them as I know they are very willing to discuss your situation.

4 – PROVIDE A QUOTE

Be sure you communicate clearly so the PO is accurate. To get the ball rolling with any one buyer, you will need to provide enough information that the buyer could respond with a very complete and useful Purchase Order. Call it a quote or a pro-forma. Know what minimum quantity and price you are willing to offer. Use the quote to provide names of seller and buyer, addresses, describe the product SKUs, provide description details and all information that your buyer will need to place an order without any confusion. Include pallet dimensions, weights, product codes, etc so that the prospective buyer knows exactly what you are offering to sell to them. There is global agreement and well defined logistics terms, called International Commercial Terms (InCoTerms). Your freight forwarder will do all the documents, the logistics and the InCoTerms. You should too as they are pretty easy to understand and are important.

5 – MEET REGULATIONS

Yes, you need to meet any regulations and certifications. Foreign importers should know what the regulations are for getting your product across customs and into the country. You can also depend on a good freight forwarder to assist you since their job is to help you, your documents, and get your product into the country. Of course, you will be ultimately responsible for meeting those regulations. And, remember that labels and certifications can be impressive to one country and meaningless in another country.

6 – FINANCE GROWTH

Can you finance additional sales? Need more in operations, new equipment or facilities? The Ex/Im Bank offers better terms to exporters. SBA can help guarantee a bank loan, making it easier for your local bank to offer you a loan. Find a banker with international expertise and ask Business Oregon for help as well.

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