Boost Your Business: Export!

Exporting is smart marketing. As a small business owner, you might think that exporting is only for big businesses. Difference in language and culture might also deter you from exploring new areas. Here is an interesting fact – 84 per cent of British Columbia exporters are companies which have less than 50 employees. Though United States receives the bulk of Canadian exports, emerging markets in Asia offer immense business growth opportunities.

Diversifying your market will boost your business strength. Here are four reasons to get into the overseas market:

Profits: Exporting improves your bottom line. New markets mean more sales. With a larger market base, your profits can grow very quickly. According to government data, during the economic downturn of 2012 Canada’s exports of goods and services expanded, thereby cushioning many local businesses against widespread impact of economic downturn.

Diversifying: We all know the cliché, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” As in life, it applies equally well to your business. Diversifying into different markets can help you mitigate risk. Different countries have different growth rates and being a part of these growth stories makes sense. Being confined to your domestic market opens your business to domestic risks.

Competitiveness: The global marketplace is very competitive. Competition means innovation. To survive and succeed, you need to improve business processes and innovate. By becoming competitive, you not only succeed in the overseas market, but also enhance the value of your business in the domestic market. You need to understand that every market has different demands and that those demands change every few years so it is important to continue reinventing your business/products/service. Always be market and product focused.

Product Life-cycle: Products have life cycles. Even if your product loses its novelty in the domestic market, you can still find a market abroad where this product can be regarded as new. If you have manufacturing processes in place to create your products, it helps to tap into overseas market to maximize your manufacturing capacity.

Exporting is not tough! You just have to prepare well in terms of research, costs, time and commitment to be successful internationally. Small Business BC’s Tradestart program can help you get ready for the global market. Women’s Enterprise Centre’s Business Advisors can help you with guidance on preparing your export plan. They can also assess your export strategy and overall business plan and give you feedback. If you need more information on how to export or are looking for a loan, e-mail us at

Look beyond your domestic market. Tap into some new marketing opportunities.

Cecilia Mkondiwa

Cecilia Mkondiwa is the Director of Program Delivery for Women’s Enterprise Centre. During her career at WEC, she has spent over 14 years working with clients in business advisory and financing. Over the years, Cecilia has worked one-on-one with over 500 business owners. Cecilia is involved directly with growth-oriented businesses that are expanding internationally.

See all posts by Cecilia

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