The advent of the internet has resulted in the world feeling like a much smaller place. Consumers from all ages are not only becoming more tech-savvy and embracing e-commerce, but they’re also more comfortable shopping on the international market. Small business owners, too, are looking to take advantage of this trend, but understanding the different rules and regulations that govern these new, emerging markets can be difficult. Here’s what you need to know.
All governments around the world will restrict or prohibit certain commodities from entering the country. This can depend on a number of different factors, from the item’s purpose of use to the number of items you’re sending as well as the value of an item. Many of these are similar around the globe. For instance, in most countries, you are not allowed to import firearms, live animals, or pharmaceuticals.
However, many countries have differing opinions on many kinds of foodstuffs or electronics that include lithium-ion batteries. You should always check the specifics laws pertaining your items in advance. Fortunately, you can find a detailed list of all the prohibitions and restrictions of a specific country on the Royal Mail website.
Perhaps the most common reasons businesses may wish to expand overseas is to take advantage of the booming Chinese market. China is now the world’s largest e-commerce market, having overtaken the United States last year, with total online revenue is expected to climb to US$1.1 trillion by 2020.
One of the main hurdles businesses face when dealing with China, however, is that the country frequently has to change its customs policies to account for the massive growth it’s experiencing. This means that, in order to avoid any unexpected fees, entrepreneurs must pay close attention to any laws or regulations that relate to their products. For further details on which items fall into restricted categories in China specifically, check the official China customs website.
Navigating the Issue
Learning about all of the different restrictions that a country has in place can be time-consuming, especially if you’re looking to open up your business to as many countries as possible. This is why so many entrepreneurs look to partner with a specialist rather than try to navigate the problem on their own.
InXpress are a global shipping provider whose role is to ensure that their clients don’t have to worry about all of the small details that go into sending goods overseas. If you feel that your time would be better spent in other areas, you may want to consider outsourcing this part of your business so that you can instead focus on your core areas of interest.