Before you commit to exporting you need to honestly assess your export potential - both in terms of the readiness of your business and of your product or service.
It's essential to carry out detailed market research to identify and evaluate the target market. Examine:
- the industry structure
- the predicted demand for your product or service
- competition and how you plan to fit into that marketplace
- any modifications required to make your product or service saleable
The Department of International Trade Overseas market introduction service (OMIS) can provide support and help in planning your entry into new overseas markets, including market research. Read about the Overseas market introduction service.
You can also complete our Get Export Ready tool which will help you identify the steps needed to succeed in export markets and find the right support to bring your product or service to market.
After completing your market research, you can draw up an export plan defining how you will enter the new market.
Consider whether you have:
- a marketing strategy that incorporates international trade development
- the necessary financial resources
- the right people to develop the new export markets
- adequate knowledge of the requirements of your chosen market - eg modifying packaging to meet local regulations and standards
- an understanding of export payment mechanisms and export finance
Then assess whether your product is suitable for export. Consider:
- product standards and regulations in the overseas market - the British Standards Institution offers help for exporters
- the costs of adapting your product or service