At Export Development Canada, we couldn’t be prouder of our Export Help Team. Every team member is an expert in their field and every day they help Canadian businesses navigate the challenges of global trade. In a very real way, this team is on the front lines of what exporting businesses are thinking about and struggling with.
In light of this, the team thought it was a great idea to start fielding questions from readers like you in every new issue of TradeInsights.
Ready? Let’s get started.
Q: What are some of the ways I can attract the right customers to my website? Are there any marketing strategies I should follow? – Kate from Toronto, ON
This is a tough nut to crack, isn’t it? It’s not enough to attract more visitors to your website—you need to attract the right visitors. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, since so many factors depend on the exact nature of your business and the specific customers you’re trying to attract.
But I’ve put together some resources that should help you get a leg up on your competitors.
- Modern business means online business—especially in an era shaped by COVID-19. Check out these guides by Shopify: 7 Ways to Promote Your Amazon Listings and Drive More Sales and Top 20 highly effective ways to promote a product online.
The folks at Shopify have pretty much mastered a data-driven approach to customer segmentation and e-commerce, which you can use to hone your own messaging. These guides explain that approach in a simple way—you don’t need to be an analyst or a marketing professional to understand.
- Our colleagues over at the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) have also done a lot of serious thinking on this subject. In order to help Canadian entrepreneurs, like you, tackle the customer challenge, they’ve put together Strategies to market your business online.
This portal contains a lot of resources we think you’ll find helpful. It includes well-researched guides and tips to adapt and grow your digital marketing strategy, test and enhance your website, use social media effectively, and provide your customers with an integrated—and personalized—online experience. The resources include:
- A free guide, Attracting and selling online, to help you build a successful brand online. You’ll also find out how to target and attract the right traffic and use the best techniques to turn website visitors into paying customers.
- BDC’s free website assessment tool will help you identify weak spots in your online offerings and make sure you’re attracting attention from your target audience.
- BDC’s list of free and low-cost web analytics tools offers a selection of tools to help quantify your web traffic and find out where and how you can up your game.
I hope these resources help get you started, Kate. Check them out and let us know what you think—or better yet, give us an update to let us know how you and your business are doing after you’ve had a chance to put these ideas into practice.
Q: Do you have any strategies for properly pricing products for export? I’m not sure where to start. – Mo from Victoria, BC
I’m glad you asked, Mo. Costing for exports can be surprisingly tricky, but it’s vital for the success of your business in both the short- and long-term. After all, make a mistake at this stage and you could end up pricing yourself out of the market or losing potential profits on every sale.
To help you avoid any export pricing mistakes, here are a few ideas that can help you to get a better handle on how to optimally price your products for your international customers.
- This kind of thing is FITT’s bread and butter (that’s the Forum for International Trade Training, in case you’re not familiar.) FITT’s TradeReady blog has a free export costing sheet template to track your spending and includes a checklist to make sure you haven’t missed any hidden costs. Highly recommended.
- BDC also has you covered here. How to price your product: 5 common strategies highlights the most important factors to consider when setting your prices. Depending on your target market, it’ll also help you understand value-based pricing and how to use it to your advantage.
Of course, a whole lot depends on the nature of your specific product or service and what regions you’re targeting, as well as your competitors in global markets.
At the Export Help Hub, we have lots of industry- and region-specific intelligence if you’d like to drill a little deeper on how to put your best foot forward. If you don’t find exactly what you need, drop us a line or contact one of our international business advisors so we can help you get where you need to go.
Good luck out there, Mo!