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Improving Exports In Covid-19 Era: Things To Keep In Mind

Research is the key and our export strategy should be based on an assessment of your own position and research into promising opportunities.

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No doubt the coronavirus pandemic is an unforeseen and unprecedented situation that has turned everything upside down. And like every major disruption, it is majorly pushing the boundaries of reliance. Exporting is a vital source of economic growth for a country and small and medium enterprises account for a substantial amount of Indian exports. As economy is slowly and steadily opening up despite the COVID-19 pandemic scare, export companies need to start evaluating the whole scenario so that their products and services overseas grow faster and do better. Exporting in the COVID-19 era is not as difficult as you might think and there are many methods to improve and increase a business level of export sales.

It’s only the unknown that’s challenging, but you just have to go for it and do it. In any economy, new geographic markets offer businesses opportunities to create new revenue streams – and studies reveal businesses that export are more productive and employ more people. Expanding into international markets can seem daunting at this point of time so here’s a “how to” which contains various tips and advice for reducing the risk and increasing the export opportunities.

How to improve export sales

1) Make exporting a part of your overall business strategy.

Research is the key and our export strategy should be based on an assessment of your own position and research into promising opportunities. Forget the losses and start afresh. This time we will need to think long term about how to reach new customers and finance your exports, as well as making sure you understand legal and tax issues.

2) Carefully assess each of the markets you are considering entering into.

Expanding into new markets involves a great deal of market research in addition to target customers. When going into international markets, businesses need to be aware of the different cultures. Clearly defining your market may seem like a simple step, but before you identify who you want to sell your product to you must understand their needs. You have to consider:

  • Demographics
  • Location
  • Common interests or needs of your target customers.
  • Market growth rates
  • Forecasted demand
  • Competitors
  • Potential barriers to entry.

3) Visiting the country is must when desk research is over

Be prepared to travel to know the scenario of the country in the post-Covid era. Working with affiliates, partners, distributors, licensees or agents can help you get established in a new market. A great way to develop export sales overseas is to find partners by being there, in the marketplace and at a trade fair.

  • Talk to people buying similar products
  • Go and buy a similar product yourself
  • Go to trade fairs and seminars and talk to potential customers.
  • Learn local customs.
  • Overcoming issues such as cultural differences, language and health and safety regulations, levels of formality & business etiquette can help deliver vast improvement to your export sales.

4) Communicate with relevant shareholders

Clear, transparent and timely communications are necessary when creating a platform to reshape the business and to secure ongoing support from customers, employees, suppliers, creditors, investors and regulatory authorities.

5) Maximize the use of government support policies

There have been plethora of policies have been announced by the governments in their respective countries. In China, central and local governments have released several financial, social insurance and tax-related policies to support companies. This includes the China Securities Regulatory Commission’s (CSRC) interim policy on listed companies refinancing. Recently the US, UK and many other developed nations have announced amendments to tax and financing policies.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

Leo Shastri

Director - Operations & Strategy, Usha Exim Private Limited

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