A 7-step checklist for launching an international business online
Going global is an essential and exciting time for any business. However, as you’ll probably already know, launching your international business online is easier said than done. Although the website might take a while to promote, your customer base becomes the entire internet, and that’s a worthwhile investment.
But, before you go clicking the launch button, here’s a seven-step checklist to make sure that you’re ready to go when it comes to launching your export business.
Ensure a Quality Checkout Experience
Before you go diving head first into foreign and international markets, you’ll need to make sure that you’ve got a payment system in place that can cope. “Whether it’s online, on your website or customers call you up to place their orders, you need to make sure that you can accept currencies from around the world with no hassle to the customer” – explains Brian Thompson, an Operation Manager at State of Writing.
Optimise Your Website for International Markets
Just because you top the search engine result page in the US, doesn’t mean that you’re going to do the same for every country in the world. Every area is different which is why you need to optimise your website, so it’s effective everywhere.
Of course, this can be a time-consuming task, but it can be made easy using tools like SEM Rush that can help you to search for international keywords. Alternatively, you can use platforms like Ahrefs to boost your traffic using competitor techniques.
Optimise for Foreign Users
Yes, this is quite a broad aspect to consider, but it’s so essential when launching your international business. The language barrier could be a potential issue when it comes to selling your product, so you need to actively reduce the confusion.
This means considering that apps like Google Translate can’t translate the text in your images of your website, only the written text, so make it easy for this platform to help you out. Also consider how easy to read and clear your fonts and sizes are, potentially for someone who doesn’t read English too well.
Ensure Your Content is Perfect
Regardless of which country your export customers are from, they are going to be looking for high-quality content that makes an impact so instead of focusing on trying to make your content appeal to all markets, ensure that the quality is there.
You can do this by proofreading and editing your content, using tools like Oxessays and UK Writings respectively. This will help you to remove any silly mistakes and errors that could otherwise cost you business.
Consider Your Speedometer
One of the most important aspects of an export website is speed. Most companies or parties using export companies will be short on time and have a lot going on that they need to organise and plan. In short, these clients are not going to want to sit around all day and wait for your website to load, even if it is a few extra seconds.
As a rule of thumb, if your website is starting to load or doesn’t show some kind of content within a few seconds, you’re going to lose customers actively. You’ll also need to bear in mind what your international markets internet connections are like and how your website will cope with them.
Cater for the International Market
Check out your competitor’s websites that also operate to an international level and market. Consider what kind of content they are using, what kind of style and language. Are they catering to a specific audience or do they have dedicated content for each country, such as separate language boxes?
It’s completely up to you what you think will work best for your business but try to remember the content basics. This means keeping your text short and sweet, using tools like Easy Word Count, so it doesn’t get confusing. You will also need to check the readability of your content through the editing process which can be helped using editing tools such as Academized.
It’s All About the Customer Experience
At the end of the day, all that international business comes back to is giving your customers the best experience that you possibly can, regardless of what country they’re in or what products or services they are buying. You need to make sure that your website is responsive, works well on a variety of devices, some of which might not even exist in your country, and caters for their needs.
This is the time-consuming yet most essential part of your launch. Be prepared for feedback and be prepared to implement it quickly so you can satisfy the most customer. You can use tools, such as Web Flow, to optimise your website quicker. Or you can jump straight into the backend using easy tools like HTML Online.
As before, launching a successful international business is no easy feat but it’s also one of the most exciting processes a business can go through. Work smart, work hard and most importantly, enjoy the transition.
Gloria Kopp is an ecommerce marketer and a content writer at Paper Fellows. She also works as a part-time blog writer and editor at Grade on Fire online service. Gloria is an author of Studydemic blog where she writes her guides and reviews with students and educators.