As your business continues to grow and you find yourself needing new markets to sell your product or service, expanding internationally may be the right move for you. However, going international doesn’t just mean shipping your product overseas, although that certainly helps. If you want to expand successfully, you need to follow these dos and don’ts of international business expansion.
Do your research
One of your first tasks as an aspiring entrepreneur is to perform extensive research on your potential target markets. This will include gathering data about the local customers, the local trends in the overseas markets, the local economy, the competitors you are likely to find there, etc. Only once you’ve collected all of the information, will you be able to make an informed decision about where to expand your business. The more work you put into researching these new markets before deciding, the better off you’ll be later on down the road.
Do not forget about Taxes
If you are expanding internationally, remember to plan for taxes on your profits. Even a familiar country could still have significant differences when it comes to business taxes. Most US businesses expanding in Canada need an expert for international tax and book accounting so as to prevent potential pitfalls. Indeed, Canada’s standard corporate income tax rate is 38%, but without a local expert at your side, you could miss out on federal abatement and general tax reduction. Some companies benefit from a tax rate of 25%! It’s not the kind of discount any business would want to miss. So, wherever you are planning to expand abroad, always seek relevant accounting expertise.
Do hire people in the new country
Once you’ve established your international branch, you may want to hire people for local jobs. If you do, consider these challenges first: international payrolls, differences in business culture, and difficulty in establishing trust. Hiring experienced and qualified candidates for your international location can be tricky, as you may not have the tools to:
- Check candidates’ records
- Manage international admin
- Identify the skills you need abroad
That’s precisely where working with a Professional Employer Organization, or PEO for short, can help you expand and employ overseas without the hassle.
Do investigate cultural differences
Even though you might find yourself in a country where English is an official language, there are still cultural differences that you need to be aware of. Taking time to learn more about these differences will help improve communication with your partners, vendors, and customers. This way, you’ll increase your likelihood of success when working with international businesses. It will also help avoid awkward social situations in which misunderstandings are common.
Do have international services
In addition to expanding your business services, you’ll want to make sure you have the appropriate infrastructure in place for a new location. That includes local customer services, local shipping, and preferred local payment methods, as well as staffing and finding employees for the country you’re opening in. When reaching out to a new market, you want to ensure that local customers can benefit from the same level of service excellence as your audience at home.
In conclusion, expanding your business overseas can be a fantastic choice to reach your goals and establish your company in a new market. However, international expansion needs planning and preparation to succeed.