First-mover companies like Amazon and eBay have had a significant impact in the eCommerce sector as millions of people sell on their platform day in and day out. It’s no surprise that the eCommerce sector is a rapidly growing sector, whether you sell intangible products like software or physical widgets or even services. Where it gets tricky are the obstacles an eCommerce business faces when exporting their products globally. There are many trade barriers associated with exporting abroad and many business owners are unaware or not prepared to face these barriers as they tend to be more reactive than proactive. However, there is a solution to help you double your exports and it’s called the eCommerce Innovation Lab.
Created by the Department of Commerce, the eCommerce Innovation Lab contains a guide called, “Preparing Your Business for Global eCommerce,” which is aimed at small to medium sized businesses, specifically online retailers that need to manage operations, payment, inventory, etc. The Guide is broken into 7 parts:
- Getting Started;
- Identifying Market Opportunities;
- Website Optimization;
- Pricing Your Products;
- Getting Paid;
- Success Stories;
- Protecting Your Brand;
- Country Briefs
As mentioned above, one of the reasons the global eCommerce sector has been a hot topic the last several years has been because of trade barriers. These include concerns about payment, intellectual property, products being returned, products lost or damaged during shipment, long delivery times, etc. These are all legitimate concerns that every eCommerce business owner faces and things always get more complicated when dealing with other countries’ regulations, policies, culture and so forth.
Another eCommerce program the Department of Commerce has initiated is called the “eCommerce Virtual Pitch Program”, which matches U.S. eCommerce-ready companies to distributors, buyer networks, and potential clients with the benefit of not having to travel to each country. This is a fast and efficient way of using the Department of Commerce’s global reach and network to pitch your product or service via the phone all the while receiving guidance and counseling from your Commerce specialist and U.S. embassy abroad.
How EXIM Bank Can Support Your eCommerce Business
The Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM Bank) currently has export finance products aimed at helping eCommerce business exports increasetheir exports whether they’re selling a product or service. These programs include our Working Capital Guarantee, which provides a 90% loan-backing guarantee and it expands the borrowing base with more attractive advanced rates compared to traditional financing options in the private sector. In addition, we provide Trade Credit Insurance allowing businesses to extend credit terms to their eCommerce buyers and insuring against nonpayment by their foreign buyers because of commercial or political reasons. To find out more about how our programs can support your eCommerce business, request a consultation with one or our specialists below: