It is important to consider the logistics of moving your merchandise to your customers. For businesses considering international trade, however, it becomes a crucial part of their decision making and planning process.
Many countries seek to discourage imports through the imposition of tariffs, quotas and non-tariff barriers (NTBs) though they may agree to make concessions to selected countries, usually in exchange for some sort of trade agreement.
You have probably found that taking decisions is much easier when you have all the facts you need. Take the simple example of buying a birthday present for a relative or close friend and having to choose between the red one or the blue one.
There is much talk amongst trade economists of value chains, supply chains and market structure. Market structure refers to a market overall and you will hear terms such as monopoly, duopoly, oligopoly, imperfect competition, and oligopsony and monopsony.
If you are planning to enter a new market, it is vital that you research your competitors thoroughly. This will help you differentiate your products or services from those of your rivals, identify any gaps in the market and plan your marketing strategy effectively.
The most successful businesses understand the needs of their customers. Consideration of how the market can be segmented is an aid to such understanding. It can also help you to assess the competition and locate gaps in the market.
Many first-time exporters express concern over how they are going to manage the distribution and marketing process in an overseas market. Many are also concerned that the process might be taken out of their hands and that they might have to surrender some control.
Marketing covers all aspects of your business, from defining your product or service to the identification of market opportunities and filling those opportunities at a price which covers your costs and generates a profit.
In many countries it is now a requirement to demonstrate that you “know your customer”. Some people now talk about the need to “know your business” (KYB) and use the phrase “know your customer” (KYC) to refer to individuals.