If e-commerce is the driving force of global economy, then it’s safe to say that China is the driving force of global economy. Over 40% of the e-commerce transactions in the world take place in this country. In the future, the influence of Chinese companies and customers on the global e-commerce market is expected to grow even further.
But why are we talking about the future? When it comes to e-commerce, the future is now. Digitization attracts more consumers by the day. In 2017, 1.66 billion people bought something online.
The complexity and the size of this market impose the need for thorough preparation. Retailers cannot afford to make any mistakes. The competition is tough. If you intend to make it in the world of international e-commerce, you have to be effective and customer-oriented.
Huda Olivier, marketing adviser for xpertwriters.com, explains: “No one can stop globalization and trade. We are lucky to live in an era of greater availability for all products we could possibly need. People are opening up to international purchases, and businesses should be ready to embrace that trend.”
Let’s talk about cross-border e-commerce, shall we? That term encompasses import and export activities of international trade. If you were solely focused on Chinese customers so far, you have a great chance to open your business to the world.
We’ll give you 6 tips on how to do that.
6 Important Tips: How to Enter Cross-Border E-Commerce from China
1 – Understand What Foreign Customers Need
When you expand your business to other countries, you have to prepare for the needs and expectations of your new customers. The first thing you should do is a thorough market analysis. If, for example, you want to include UK, Australia, and Canada in your list of countries where you ship packages, you need to rethink your entire strategy.
First, you’ll start with marketing. Where can you find these users? What are their needs and likes? How can you attract them through social media advertising? You need to reinvent your marketing approach.
2 – Understand the New E-Commerce Law
On January 1, the new e-commerce law took effect. It focuses on preventing the sale of counterfeit merchandise, which has been a big problem for the industry. This law aims to reinvent China’s reputation as a global e-commerce leader. The country should no longer be seen as the source of counterfeit merchandise.
The new law is all about protecting the consumers and calling out the sellers to greater responsibility. Make sure to read and understand the norms that you have to follow.
3 – Establish Flawless Online Reputation
When you start a store on Amazon, Alibaba or another platform, you aim towards high rating. You do the same thing when you sell through your own website. You want great reputation, as that’s the first thing that people will look at before making a purchase from you.
Consumers from all around the world take time to read comments and reviews. A service like ResumesPlanet, for example, is successful on an international level only because it maintained great reputation throughout the years of existence.
You’ll reach your reputation by delivering great products in an effective manner. In addition, the customer support system of your store makes a big difference.
4 – Choose an Effective Warehouse Management System
You may have the best online store in the world, with the most effective products promoted through the most committed marketing campaign. But if you don’t do this part right, your efforts will go to vain.
You need a warehouse management solution to take care of storage, order fulfillment, and returns. If you’re a small business, renting space for storage and hiring staff to take care of maintenance, packaging and shipment is not cost-effective. You’ll do much better if you simply invest in a professional service to take care of that part for you. Floship is the right way to go.
5 – Set Your Expectations Straight
When you want to reach out to foreign markets, you have to be ready to make an investment. You’ll have expenses for storage, shipment, and returns. Marketing is a whole other issue.
You’ll need to engage in some analytics. How much money will you spend to store and send each product? What’s the potential risk of returns? What price will you have to set, so you’ll cover all these expenses? How many products will you need to sell to make your international business profitable? How much will you need to invest in marketing in order to reach that number of sales?
Who said e-commerce was easy? It requires a detailed and complex plan. But when you get that part right, this will be a great opportunity for you to establish a successful brand.
6 – Describe and Promote Your Products
When you’re selling something to foreigners, you have to keep in mind that maybe they haven’t had any experience with a similar product before. If, for example, you’re selling cosmetics, you’re offering a brand that’s completely different from what they used so far. To convince them that your product is a better option for them, you have to explain why that’s the case.
Your product descriptions should be clear, but detailed at the same time. Include valid information about the ingredients, properties, and mode of use. Your grammar and spelling should be perfect. Chinese retailers have been mocked all over the world for mistakes in their English. We don’t want to be a joke. We want to present ourselves as serious competitors on the global e-commerce market.
The best recommendation we could give is to hire professional writers to compose product descriptions for you. Freelance writers won’t charge much for that service. And if you already have the content and need to get it fixed, a freelance editor will charge an even more affordable fee.
The Future of E-Commerce Is Now
You’re seeing plenty of small business owners from China expanding their limits. They open up to foreign markets. The country and the e-commerce platforms that operate here made that possible for us.
You know that the future of e-commerce is going to be bright, and you’d want to take part in it. But why wait? The right moment is now. Yes; the competition is huge and you’ll have to go through many preparations. But the effort is part of the journey.
Looking for a Partner to Ship your Goods to China?
Floship is a Hong-Kong based e-Commerce order fulfillment provider. We can help you ship your goods to Chinese consumers in Mainland China, as well as shipping products manufactured in China, to the rest of the world. With storage facilities in both Hong Kong and Shenzhen, automated and completely integrated software and sharp fees, we are your perfect China shipping solution. Want to learn more? Fill out our Free Consultation form and lets get in touch.
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Alexandra Reay is a journalist, professional writer and editor. She is in love with books, horse-riding, the search of the information and conferences. Find Alex on Google or Twitter.