Tips for internationalising your webshop successfully


Internationalisation is a hot item among E-Commerce entrepreneurs. This makes growth via market development a logical step. A step that is, nevertheless, often underestimated. After all, just how easy is it to sell your products abroad?

Jeroen Leenders, Country Manager for Salesupply, has 5 tips for internationalising your webshop successfully. Salesupply helps web-retailers to internationalise their webshops. They have offices in 15 different European countries through which they will sell your products online successfully. They do this by using their own, local, staff: people who speak the language, know the local e-commerce market and take care of foreign customer service. This inspires an enormous amount of confidence.

Tip 1: Market research
Research thoroughly the country in which you want to sell. Look at the market for your products, at the existing online competitors and at their prices. If you are robust enough to take part and if the search volume is large enough, then there is a chance that you will succeed. If your competitors are cheaper, then you could ask yourself whether this particular country is right for you.

Tip 2: Localise your webshop
Consumers prefer to purchase in their own country. Respect this fact, so “think global, act local”. Make sure you are represented in the target country via a local address and a local telephone number. Don’t neglect to take into account any foreign ‘distance selling’ laws. Unfortunately, these still vary per country. Adjust your webshop accordingly. Pay attention to any local webshop trustmarks as well.

Tip 3: Good translation
It may seem like stating the obvious, but get a native speaker to translate your shop’s website. Google translate is simply not an option! A properly translated webshop site exudes confidence and this will lead to conversion. In other words, don’t look for the cheapest translator, but for the best: the benefits will far outweigh the costs.

Tip 4: Local customer service
When customers have questions or complaints, they want to be able to contact people who speak, understand and can communicate in their own language. Someone from Germany or France is really not going to phone a Dutch customer service line. Purchasing via the internet is all about confidence, so invest in a good local customer support solution.

Tip 5: Local (online) marketing
A frequent error is to suppose that the marketing for a foreign market can be worked out in the Netherlands. Don’t make this mistake. The Dutch are not familiar with the markets of Spain, France, Poland or Germany. Always get the operational aspects of your marketing done in the target country.

‘In short, respect your foreign consumers and localise your webshop. These tips can help increase your chance of success’, according to Jeroen Leenders.