Taking your business global is a big step. It means you have something that the world wants and you’re ready to sell it. But, you need to be prepared before opening your doors to foreign buyers. You need to make sure your website is ready and compliant.
You need to be aware of each country’s local laws and tax regulations. Having a local resource on your side to ensure a smooth process for the introduction of your product is also vital.
The following are important points to consider before going global.
Make Sure Your Website Is Ready
The European Union (EU) recently put the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) into action, changing how websites around the world interact with users from the EU. The core goal of the legislation is to streamline data privacy laws and bring them under one set of laws. It also created a more enforceable set of laws to protect user privacy from casual attempts at data gathering from websites.
What this means for you is that your site has to be GDPR-compliant as well as being able to process sales from the countries you’re selling in. You need a website that can accept the different forms of payment popular in Europe along with the different currencies.
Additionally, while you might prefer to keep the website in English, you may find that there are certain products more popular in non-English speaking countries. Getting the pages for those items translated into the relevant languages is something you need to consider in order to increase sales.
Get Help From a Tax Attorney
Via Camino Financial
When you sell your product in another country and earn a profit from that sale, you will have tax liabilities in both the country you’re selling from and the country you’re selling to. You can use a corporate structure which can help you pay a lower tax rate, but it’s not always a guarantee that this will work. And you need to know the local laws of the country which you’re selling to if you plan to sell more than one item.
Foreign markets welcome imported goods, but only when the seller acts in good faith and complies with local laws. Instead of playing guessing games, get help from a tax attorney to navigate the waters of international selling and tax liabilities.
Line Up Local Resources
Via Wikipedia/By Jimmy Baikovicius – Flickr
You may need a place to store your products before shipping, or you may need someone to help you navigate the local bureaucracy to obtain the license you need for selling. Seek out local agents that work in these fields and connect with them to find out how they can help you get your product into the local market. Maintaining a friendly business relationship with people who speak the language and know how to get things done can be invaluable to your business.
Going global is a big step, but it’s one that can take your business farther than you have ever imagined. Being prepared for the challenges you’re likely to face will benefit you and your company because you won’t get bogged down in the small details.