In this section we shall talk about all the costs involved in
exporting. This will give you a clearer picture of exporting and also
give you an idea about the kind of finances that will be required.
Costs of exporting can be kept low, but can't be avoided altogether. If you're just starting, you'll face the usual start-up costs for an office, furniture, equipment, and supplies. You'll incur some initial “research costs” to identify your best markets. To enter and develop these markets, you'll have costs to gain exposure, set up sales and distribution networks, and attract customers etc.
As your exports increase, you might take overseas business trips, do
more media advertising, and participate in trade shows abroad. In some
countries, you may have to redesign or modify your product to meet
local requirements or customer preferences.
Generally, the more you spend to prepare, promote, and adapt for
export, the greater the return for your business. But don't be afraid
if your funds are limited. You can start even on a limited budget. Some
of the major costs involved in export are:
You may not need additional employees. One experienced person can handle the work for several clients, gathering market research, seeking overseas customers, responding to inquiries, preparing export paperwork, and arranging for delivery of the goods.
If you're already producing a product or service, you can export through an Export Management Company (EMC) or Export Trading Company (ETC) without adding or training any new company staff. EMCs/ETC’s already have relationships abroad and will incur some or all of the initial costs to find you customers and generate orders.
Some EMCs and most ETCs also buy goods outright from domestic producers (with their own money) for resale abroad. You, as the supplier, would get paid right away and would also benefit from exposure of your product abroad.
If you intend to handle some or all of the export work in-house, you
should hire an export manager and train someone your staff.
If you’re a new exporter, you’re probably not known outside your country. You’ll need to promote yourself to get overseas exposure.
A company Web site, with company highlights and product descriptions can be your first step. A web designer can create an attractive site for you, or you can do it yourself. You can register your “dot.com” domain for a small fee. Because your site may be difficult to find on the Internet, you should also list your company in one or more Internet/Export Directories. One such directory is: http://www.infobanc.com/ There are many more such directories on the Internet.
In addition to a Web site and directory listings, you should also
have printed materials for mailings, handouts and responses to
inquiries, such as a company brochure, product sheets, etc. Your
brochure could be self-prepared or professionally designed by a
Whenever possible, place free press-releases in industry journals with international circulation.
Higher cost options include paid telemarketing, media ads, and participation in overseas trade shows.
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