5 Steps to Taking Your eCommerce Business International

How to Expand Your eCommerce Business Globally 

Five moves to make when growing your eCommerce company internationally


international eCommerceDeciding to take your eCommerce business global can be a huge decision. There are quite a few decisions to make and steps you need to take when expanding your eCommerce business internationally. Branding, shipping, customer service, and even which content management system you use can all greatly influence how well your eCommerce business does in other countries and regions.

Market and Brand Your Company for Each Region

  • Use a top-level domain or a subdomain if you are targeting specific countries or regions. Examples of a top-level domain are “.com” which is country-agnostic, “.uk” for the United Kingdom, and “.cn” for China. An example of a subdomain would be “china.domainname.com”. You can also use subdirectories for countries that you aren’t specifically targeting. An example of a subdirectory would be “domainname.com/cn”.

  • Use a person to translate content for each region you are targeting so the message and meaning is what you intended it to be. If you use a machine to translate your content, certain meanings could get confused and messages could get lost. At the best, you would confuse your potential customers and at the worst, you could actually offend people.

  • Use images that match the culture you are targeting. For example, if you are trying to sell to a conservative country, a picture of a scantily clad woman could be highly offensive. Make sure that the images you use on your international website are suitable for each region that you aim to sell in.

Use a CMS that is Global Friendly

  • The content management system you use needs to be able to translate content into different languages. It should also allow you to edit content on each language page to make sure the overall meaning matches.

  • The CMS should present flags or a language selector for your website visitors to select from on every page of your site. Your visitors should be able to easily pick the language no matter which page they are on.

  • The content management system should also allow you to test content and pages for all regions and languages. You need to see how your content is doing in every language, not just yours.


Make Shipping Terms Easily Seen and Understood

  • Before you even begin selling to another country, you need to have shipping terms and procedures in place. You need to know how you are going to get your products to your international customers.

  • Next, you need to communicate to your potential customers how their items will get to them. The shipping terms, including who the carrier will be and how long the item will take to get to them, need to be easily seen throughout the checkout process.

  • Integrated shipping in your eCommerce site can give you a competitive advantage. Real-time shipment tracking, tight integration with shipment label printing, and automated tracking number generation allow you to be up front with your customers about what to expect when buying an item that will ship internationally, and keep them updated on the shipment's status.


Categorize Products for Customs and Duties

  • You need to have your items categorized and grouped so you know which customs and duties forms need to be filled out and which fees need to be sent in.

  • Use software that will automatically generate customs forms for each of the items and helps you manage status.


24/7 International Customer Service

  • If you are able to, it is best to have 24/7 customer service and support available for your customers all over the world.

  • Use a page for frequently asked questions to allow for customers to help themselves.

  • Allow customers to chat with customer service agents through live chat .

Clarity Can Help 

Our team at Clarity has helped numerous clients expand their eCommerce businesses internationally. We understand the work it takes to set up your eCommerce website to handle international customers. We designed out Clarity eCommerce platform to be capable to handling international businesses. To find out more about how Clarity can help your eCommerce business go global, call or click to contact us today!