In the fast and furious global marketplace, timing is everything. Understanding the latest e-commerce trends, identifying niche markets, learning how to reach international customers, and engaging new customers are all crucial to success. With some adjustments to your current business plan, marketing strategies, and content delivery network, you will expand your business to a global market, and create potential for large profits and long-term revenue streams.
Identify Your Current Market
You may believe you already have a share of the international market. But do you know where exactly are your customers located, and whether your content delivery performing as it should? Sizing up your customer base and identifying the total revenue opportunities for your product or service is the first step to expanding market reach.
There are two types of markets: available and addressable. The addressable market is the total number of possible revenue opportunities for your products, while available market is the portion of the addressable market for which you can realistically compete. Be sure to research your customer base for insightful information about your current market share.
Booming International Markets
Developing markets offer the greatest potential for e-commerce growth over the next 7 years. Asian markets account for a large share of e-commerce. Market experts such as Credit Suisse advise that market expansion to Asia is a worthwhile endeavor and there is no question it will play a significant role in the 21st century global marketplace. China is the second largest economy in the world, with Japan a close third. Furthermore, Southeast Asia and India are growing rapidly, with both gaining ground as global economic powers due to global e-commerce. Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, and Turkey also hold promise for market expansions.
Additionally, mobile commerce is expanding rapidly, driving 60% of traffic for retail sites. To engage users around the globe, your website should support multiple platforms, including mobile and new emerging mobile devices.
Considerations for Global Market Expansion
The most important step for expanding to a global market is to take a good, hard look at your website.
- In order to become established in a specific international market, you must first speak the language. To be successful, your website must translate content to the country’s native language and emulate the culture.
- Devise payment options that fit the local population. Some European residents don’t have bank accounts. So, while Visa, MasterCard or PayPal may work on your U.S.-based websites, they may not be appropriate internationally. Germans prefer ELV bank transfers, and many Japanese customers pay cash upon delivery. Many African citizens pay with phone credits. Research your options, and understand the sales tax structure as well.
- Show pricing in multiple currencies.
- Verify shipping and logistics structures, including return policies. There are higher product return rates in some countries than there are in others.
Creating an Optimal Online Experience
If you plan to expand your business to Asia – China especially – you should understand the complications due to geographic and content licensing issues that exist for international businesses. On average, Chinese consumers will wait about 33.1 seconds for a Western branded page, as compared to 4.8 seconds for those located within China. It’s a frustrating wait, and one that won’t encourage repeat customers. CDNs can improve user experience by providing pre-cached information from external hosts to expedite these load times and reduce server load.
CDN providers, such as CDNetworks, improve speed. Sites with better performance have been found to rank higher in internet searches. When a website loads quickly, users spend more time on and view more pages. Satisfied customers spend more when they can navigate quickly and easily within your site.
In just milliseconds, CDNetworks can help you deliver websites and applications to 99% of the world. Whether you are expanding to a global market or focusing on your U.S. business goals, CDNetworks can provide dynamic web acceleration solutions, and an efficient and satisfying customer service experience. For more information on our innovative products, visit our website.