Canadian SMEs can compete on a global scale in any sector of activity. Some SMEs make millions in export revenues each year! However, it takes considerable preparation and organization. Here is a check list of things to consider before beginning your export project:
– Are you and your managers committed to making the necessary effort to carry out your export project (strategic thinking, all the steps required, administrative formalities, management, etc.) knowing that it may take a few years before you see a return on your investment?
– Do you have the financial resources to deal with new export-related expenses? Are you aware of government subsidies available to SMEs for export projects?- ?
– Do you know your target market and competitors (market research)? Do your products have an added value, and are they well priced?
– Does your company have the capacity to satisfy increased demand (sufficient human resources, reliable suppliers, agile enough to face problems, etc.)?
– Do you have an export expert to help you plan every step, and who has resources/contacts in your target country?
– Are you ready to do some rebranding and marketing to promote the sale of your products abroad (to respect cultural and language differences)?
– Will you be available to meet your new clients’ needs (before and after the sale of your product)?
– Do you have a good commercial/tax lawyer to help you understand the implications of your project?
– Do you know how to manage your business with different currencies?
– Did you develop an export plan with an expert (well-defined short, medium and long-term goals, steps to achieve them, financial planning, transportation costs, risk management mechanisms, etc.)?
– Are you familiar with international trade regulations, product standards or permit and intellectual property requirements?