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How Startups Can Easily Attract Global Customers: 3 Simple Methods

 

Businesses with deep pockets don’t have a monopoly in reaching consumers globally. Even startups can attempt to win international customers. There are simple but effective strategies new businesses can do to generate sales globally.

They don’t require massive investments. You may have already heard about them, but haven’t paid attention, thinking that they’re too basic and generic.

1. Optimised e-commerce site

Anyone can put up an online store and start selling to prospective international customers, although not everyone knows how to optimise their e-commerce operations.

That’s why many end up failing to get the results they desire. However, optimising an e-commerce venture is not that difficult.

Take note of the following pointers.

1. Search engine optimisation is an essential part of establishing an online presence, more so in launching an e-commerce operation.

Without it, it will be difficult to rank high in search engine results, which means attracting potential customers is going to be challenging. You need to research the relevant keywords you can use to make your site searchable online. You then have to place these keywords in your content, metadata, headers, and other parts of your website.

2. It’s not enough to have an online store if your goal is to attract global customers. Potential buyers in different countries or regions use different languages.

How do you expect them to consider buying your products if they don’t understand the language you use in your site? That’s why you need to localise.

Localisation, however,  is not just about translating your content from one language to another. It entails a conscious effort to present your store and products in ways that make them more relatable to your intended audience.

This means using slogans, catchphrases, pop culture references, idioms, and other textual elements that are more familiar to the target customers.

At the same time, it calls for the removal or replacement of lines that are deemed offensive or unfamiliar to the intended customers.

Localisation can be tedious, but it’s not too difficult. You need to find someone who understands the language and culture of the new market you are targeting.

Addressing Payment Difficulties. Making payments faster, easier, and less complicated encourages more sales to international customers.

Provide several payment methods so there’s at least one way customers would find convenient. Eliminate the currency exchange barrier by offering a dynamic currency conversion service or an automatic online calculator.

Quality Customer Service. Customer service starts with marketing to post-sale customer care. It commences in extending courtesy and patience when answering the inquiries of potential customers.

It also includes the way you treat customer complaints and suggestions to improve your service. Encourage customers to post reviews of your products or store through a comments/reviews section and on social

Don’t expect to succeed in your optimisation efforts in your first try. Often, there are many areas where you can still improve. As such, you need to monitor your e-commerce operations regularly.

Track the number of visitors to your site, the pages they visit, the ways they reach your site, the bounce rate, the duration of their stay on your pages, and various other data. These will help you pinpoint the flaws and introduce the necessary tweaks.

Making Things Easier: You may have an excellent product and an enthusiastic customer service team, but you may not have the expertise in making your business easily searchable online.

There’s nothing wrong with hiring a third party to do SEO and localisation for your business if you get a significant international sales to boost in return.

2. Localised online marketing

Online marketing encompasses several digital marketing strategies, including email marketing, social media marketing, and online ads (displayed on sites, blogs, games, and video streams).

If you are trying to reach out to a global audience, you can’t just use one language for all of your marketing materials. Additionally, a simple translation is not enough. Your online marketing should be localised to suit different regions or countries.

In localisation, the marketing content is not only converted into a different language.

Some words, expressions, references, or themes may be modified to make them more appealing to the target market or to avoid things that may be considered offensive or inappropriate. Images, symbols, or parts of a video may also be changed for the same reasons.

Making Things Easier: Again, you have the choice to entrust the localisation of your online marketing campaign to reputable digital marketing companies with a good track record in localisation. You don’t have to do everything on your own.

3. Participating in trade organisations and events

On the non-online side, you can also boost your sales to international customers by getting involved with nonprofit and governmental organisations created to help exporters.

In the United States, for example, there’s the US Chamber of Commerce, the United States Commercial Service,  and Export.gov, which assist businesses that are trying to break into the international market.

You can also find organisations that specifically facilitate trade to certain countries. For American companies that are planning to expand to South Korea, for example, the American Chamber of Commerce in Korea can extend some help.

Additionally, you can participate in trade shows designed to connect exporters or businesses that target global customers with prospective customers and other businesses.

These shows serve as a platform for meeting business partners or potential customers. They provide excellent networking opportunities. They can also serve as a way to learn about competitors and obtain ideas useful in operating a business and attracting new customers.

In summary

Optimising e-commerce operations, localising an online marketing campaign, and getting involved with trade organisations and events are effective methods for gaining customers from abroad.

Startups don’t need massive amounts of resources to penetrate the international market. With the ways discussed above, attracting global customers should be fairly easier.

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Image Credit: Kyle Glenn

This article was first published on October 6, 2019

The post 3 easy ways for startups to attract global customers appeared first on e27.

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