Octagona Srl/Internationalization News/How to sell abroad online, all the tips to put into practice
How to sell abroad online, all the tips to put into practice

How to sell abroad online, all the tips to put into practice

The possibility of selling abroad online is one of the options that most interests entrepreneurs in the digital world, who make products of all types available on marketplaces or e-commerce.

Selling in multiple countries generally provides a higher profit, which can reduce warehouse and shipping costs. It is an advantageous solution for most, but this opportunity must be studied carefully: today the market is global and without borders, but the strategy for selling abroad online it cannot be the result of improvisation.

In this article we will indicate the basic advice for undertaking online sales even outside national borders, in an aware and constructive way.


Selling online in foreign countries, the key factors to start from


The first thing to check, if you want to have an online store open to purchases in multiple countries, is represented by theanalysis of potentially target markets. Based on the products you want to sell, you must focus on those countries where the demand for these products is profitable. For example, it might be useful for you to know that in South Korea the most popular goods are those related to clothing and personal care.

After choosing the countries to target, it is desirable translate your e-commerce into target languages. It may seem superfluous, given that many online stores use English as the first language for each country, but it can actually be a determining factor. In the digital world, almost everyone has the technical skills to make a purchase, but not so much in understanding all the specifications of a product in English. Whether it's Russian, Chinese or Japanese, It is important to make content accessible – above all the characteristics and conditions of sale – in the specific language of the country in which we want to sell online.

At the same time, it is recommended allow as many purchasing methods as possible, even local ones. Another aspect to take into account is theusability of the site: Your online store should be easy to navigate, with a clear and simple purchasing process. Both the terms of the contract (including the right of withdrawal) and the Privacy Policy and the various certifications linked to the goods must be clearly visible and easily consultable.

Read also: What are the success factors of business internationalization?

Speaking of shipments abroad, we can say that they are possible for the vast majority of products. It can be sold very easily within the European Union; if you want to sell outside these boundaries, you will be there associate specific documentation with the goods. This documentation must have both an HS code and an EORI code, necessary to transfer goods abroad. The costs to be incurred depend above all on the country to which you are shipping, and are generally not reflected in the product price for more than the 10%. Therefore, it will be advisable to choose companies and couriers with an excellent quality/price ratio. 

Of course, to simplify shipping and logistics it is possible to rely on a marketplace, like Amazon's. It must be said, however, that in this way the unboxing of the products is made standard, therefore the ability to compete in this respect is reduced.

You discover which channels and tools you can use to sell online your company's products 


How to sell abroad online



Ecommerce or Marketplace?


The marketplace allows you to sell online abroad, without having a platform specifically dedicated to your products. It's about a low budget option, which however cannot allow targeted work on the goods offered for online sale; at the same time, the marketplace is a place of great competition. Then trying to launch on one or more marketplaces, taking advantage of a lower price, means adopting not always a winning strategy, On the contrary. 

An e-commerce site instead allows you to have full control over products and sales leads, also allowing you to have clearer and more realistic statistics. E-commerce may represent a greater cost in the beginning, but can lead to more important results and at the same time allow for greater exposure for your brand. 

Since each country has its own culture, it is recommended to create ad hoc content for each country in which you want to sell, also involving social media through targeted campaigns.

Read also: the guide to the perfect marketplace


Selling abroad online: what taxation?


Taxation relating to goods sold abroad, inside and outside the European Union, is not a very simple topic. Generally speaking for every transaction, it must be VAT applied of the country in which the sale was made, if the sales limit established by that state is exceeded; within this limit, however, Italian VAT applies. 

If you make sales Non-EU B2B, invoices must not include VAT. However, for B2C sales outside the European Union, the goods shipped will be subject to VAT and other taxes, which will however be borne by the buyer.


Digital Export, an option that is becoming "almost" necessary


We have already talked about on our site Digital Export, and how essential it is for many companies to also direct their sales abroad online, given the exponential growth of Italian exports. Without forgetting that Digital Export will become an important competitive factor: those who sell abroad online will be able to strengthen your brand, make it expand and grow also for the Italian clientele. 

Read also: The advantages of business internationalization

To achieve greater affirmation of your brand through online sales abroad, it can be particularly useful to rely on professionals in the field not only of Digital Export, but also of International Advisory.

Octagona can help you develop winning strategiesi to conquer the markets that fall within your company's target. Contact our team: we will promptly answer all your questions and together we will verify the feasibility of each expansion project for your business.


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