by Sharon Jones

If you've seen a lot of business growth in recent years but it’s starting to drop off, it might be time to consider taking the company global. Often, you’re not seeing any more growth because you’ve already broken into all of the available markets in your own country, and you’ll have to cross international borders to find more customers. Before you do that, you should see if there are any potential new markets closer to home, but if there aren’t, it’s time to start looking at global expansion. Successful international expansion could help you to increase your profits by a lot, but if you get it wrong, it might mean the end of the business entirely. There are a whole new set of challenges involved with global expansion so it’s vital that you’re properly prepared. These are some of the biggest hurdles that you’ll face when your business is going global.

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Customer Relations

By this point, you should be an expert at interacting with customers in your own country. You know what your audience is and how best to connect with them. But when you start expanding into other countries, you may have to start again from scratch. The marketing tactics that worked at home aren’t necessarily going to be as effective when you’re trying to reach people from a completely different culture. That’s why you need to put plenty of time and effort into your international customer relations. Research is absolutely key here. You need to look at other similar companies that are already operating in those countries and see what kind of marketing tactics they’re using. Do plenty of research into the different demographics and try to identify the market segments that are most likely to respond well to your products. If you don’t know your target audience inside out, you’ll never be able to market to them effectively.  

Tax Issues

Business taxes are always a bit of a nightmare and it’s one of the things that new business owners struggle with the most. But by now, you should have a good handle on your tax affairs. However, the laws are going to vary from country to country, so you need to get to grips with all of the tax regulations in places that you plan to expand into. The best thing to do is hire legal professionals like Brunoro Law who have good experience dealing with international tax affairs. They’ll be able to advise you on exactly what you need to do in terms of filing taxes in other countries and prepare you for any challenges that you might face.

Long Distance Management

Now that you’re expanding into other countries, you’re going to be running multiple offices long distance, and that can be tough. It’s important that you don’t focus all of your efforts on the new location and neglect the old one. The key to running multiple offices in different locations is always communication. It’s important that you have regular video conferences if you can’t easily go between offices and you have the management at each location give you a weekly report so you always know what’s going on.

Global expansion could be the way to take your business to the next level, but only if you can overcome these hurdles.