How To Start An Online Import & Export Business From Home In 2019
Some will still ask questions like “How to start an online Import and Export business in Nigeria” but we already got the answer covered in this single article.
Before venturing into the business, you start by asking yourself what is an Import and Export Business?
The world is indeed becoming a smaller place. Who would have thought that ordinary people like you and I (who do not have a fat bank account) can now import goods directly from overseas suppliers?.
Today we will be discussing on how to start an online Importation and exportation business in six(6) Essential Ways.
Six (6) Essential ways of starting an online Import and Export
- Get your Business Registered Online
- Chose A Product To Import Or Export
- Source Your Suppliers
- Product Price
- Locate your Customers
- Get Your Logistics
GET YOUR BUSINESS REGISTERED ONLINE
Before you venture into an online business this 21st century, you need to cover up some certain bases like creating a website as well as social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, and a host of others.
So, Get the basics in order. This means registering your business with the state in which your headquarters will be located, registering a domain name, getting any business licenses you need to legally operate, and so on.
“The first thing I recommend for anyone is to have your capital upfront,” says Cuffe. “That’s so you can protect your business from not only a legal standpoint but also the equity of the brand that you create and to make sure you invest in the quality of whatever you launch. Test a market, or test a city, then a state, then a region. Then I think that there are greater chances for success and sustainability long term.”
CHOSE A PRODUCT TO IMPORT OR EXPORT
The step two (2) in Starting an online business in 2019 is to chose the right product to import or export which you think that could sale in the market.
Once you find your product, you also need to identify the right market for it. After all, you need someone to sell it to! This is where your trend-spotting skills come into play. The best products for an import/export business are products that are just starting to become popular, or show some promise to being so in the future.
You can make a research on a product that is already becoming popular or show some promise to being so in the future.
SOURCE YOUR SUPPLIERS
Once you have a product you’d like to trade internationally, you need to find a local manufacturer or other producer that makes your product and can lead to a strong partnership. A good relationship with a supplier is crucial to long-running success in an imports/exports business.
You might also be your own supplier—in some cases, as i am for myself.
Typically, the business model on an imports/exports business includes two key understandings: The volume of units sold, and the commission made on that volume.
You know what product you want to work with and you’ve identified your target market. Next up, figuring out how much to charge.
Be sure to price your product such that your markup on the product (what ends up being your commission) doesn’t exceed what a customer is willing to pay. But you don’t want to make it too low such that you aren’t ever going to make a profit.
Locate your Customers
There won’t be any joy in an Online Business if there is no customer to sale to. Deciding on a market is not the same as finding your customers. You can’t just send your products to the Port of Lagos and start selling your wares on the docks to whoever walks by. You usually need to find distributors and clients who will take on your product and sell to others.
If you have a quality website that includes digital marketing campaigns, your customers may end up finding you. But to get started, Check with any local contacts you have in the area, contact the area’s Chamber of Commerce, trade consulates, embassies, and so on. These entities might be able to give you a local contact list that could be vital help in starting a imports/exports business.
Get the Logistics Down
Perhaps the most complex aspect of importing and exporting is the logistics of taking a product created somewhere and selling it somewhere else. How does the product make the trip from the vineyard of South Africa to the wine glasses of drinkers in California, for example?
“When you are operating within a supply chain where your customer is different than your client, which is different than your consumer, it requires an extraordinary amount of coordination,” says Cuffe. “I use a freight forwarder that on my behalf reaches out to shipping lines, like Maersk.”
Hiring a global freight forwarder is generally a good idea for all imports/exports businesses, as they’ll serve as a transport agent for moving cargo—saving you a lot of time and worry about getting your products from the factory to a warehouse. Essentially, you’ll give them information about your business and your intentions for the product, and they’ll arrange the shipping agreements, insurance, and oftentimes the licenses, permits, tariffs, and quotas of working within another country. This can remove a lot of the headache associated with starting an imports/exports business in an international trade market.