Many small companies think that exporting is more complex than it can be. The UK economy relies heavily on exporting as well as importing and the majority of the companies considering exporting turn to the UK Trade & Investment (UKTI). The UKTI helps a range of companies – from those who employ a handful of people to large multinationals – to export successfully.
The fact is, no company is too small to export, and in terms of the global market, UK firms have a reputation for quality in sectors ranging from retail to engineering to service provision. There is every reason for UK companies to have the confidence to go out and sell globally.
Some common fears about non-payment, to worrying about appropriate documentation, or cultural customs, are perceived barriers which can be overcome.
In terms of payment issues, banks can advise on letters of credit and bonds that will help seal the deal. On those occasions when banks are unable to help, UK Export Finance has a range of products – including credit insurance – specifically tailored to small businesses.
If you don’t offer physical goods, and offer services, such as professional services, you can tap into freelancing sites, such as Elance, PPH or People4Business, who are set up to handle global buyers and handle all payments. The UK’s professional services are in demand as countries throughout the world seek out legal, financial and other online expertise. Teachers, accountants, coaches, legal roles, web-design, and digital #marketing companies conduct their businesses naturally over the internet.
For companies which offer physical goods, and are considering exporting for the first time, they should contact the UKTI and their local Chamber of Commerce. You can sell directly, via a website, or consider using a distributor for more hard-to-reach markets, or more complex products, such as medical or regulated products.
Later in November 2015, ExploreExport is an event for Wales-based organisations to learn about exporting in more depth. Participants will be able to participate in seminars, talk to specialists and gain insights into markets on interest. The event will be held at the SWALEC Stadium on Thursday 12th November. Check out the link below for more information.
For those companies who need help in understanding documentation and procedures for customs, banking and certification, the South Wales Chamber offers more information via their website.
In order to compete, the global market is ready and waiting, so seek out advice and go along to your local events!