Taking your eCommerce business into new markets
Expanding your business into new, overseas markets can be equal parts exhilarating and daunting. Reaching these new audiences with your business will likely require not only money and time but also tactics.
Success will mean adjusting your approach to effectively promote your products or services to different cultures and catering to regulations you may not be used to. While there’s no recipe for success, there are things any ecommerce business owner can do to maximise chances of success.
Here we look at five things that will help your business begin to make a name for itself in overseas markets.
Learn the language
Language is a big factor when it comes to taking your business into new markets. Research suggests that, when English isn’t the native language of the market you’re trying to reach, it will not be the preferred language of customers either – even when there’s a high level of English language ability.
Customers want to shop in a language they understand and are confident using. Therefore, to offer a seamless shopping experience, eCommerce translation and localisation are a must. Failure to learn the language could harm your branding, making it harder to find your footing.
This is an issue for businesses big and small. A classic example of when it goes wrong comes from Nike, which suffered a big blow when they were trying to penetrate the Chinese market. They developed a shoe to celebrate the Year of the Monkey, but unfortunately, the characters put on the shoes translated to ‘becoming fat’. This made them the laughingstock amongst the audience they were targeting and made it harder for them to penetrate the market.
Get your language skills right then, and you can compete with the big players.
Build relationships with social media influencers
Influencer marketing is arguably one of the most effective ways to penetrate new markets. Firstly, influencers understand the local language and culture. Second, influencers allow you to introduce your brand through voices that your target audience trusts the most. Lastly, influencer marketing directs you to the marketing channels where your target audience spends most of their time.
Here are a few tips to help you market your products and services using influencers.
Find local talent
The best influencers aren’t necessarily the ones with the highest number of followers. Studies have shown that micro-influencers with smaller audiences have better engagement and conversion. They also allow you to access different sub-markets that may not be on your radar.
Use local ties
Ask influencers to incorporate your products or services in their everyday activities. They could also incorporate recognisable landmarks of the area you want to enter in their content. This will make your brand feel immediately relatable to your target market.
Multimedia content to be used on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube can be very effective at helping brands penetrate new markets. Unlike TV commercials, influencers create content as if they are speaking to their peers, making it more genuine and therefore more persuasive.
Localise your website
Simply put, website localisation is the process of refining website content through languages and culture to provide the most relevant experience for users. Localising your website involves more than just translating text, so you may need to bring in expertise from someone who already knows your target market and what makes it tick. In addition to that, prioritise getting a country code domain name for your website.
Entering new markets is challenging, but can also bring great rewards. By adjusting your marketing approach to cater to different cultures, you can give your ecommerce business the best possible chance of success.