What will it take to get your ecommerce business off the ground and expanding to an international market? Do you have a plan to get your business into an international marketplace once you’ve found success in your native marketplace? On this episode of The Amazing Seller, you’ll hear from guest expert Lucy Marshall as she goes through the steps sellers like you need can take to get your brand into a global market. Lucy covers topics like how to get started in a new market, adapting your listing to a market with a different language and culture, how to deal with your money conversions and other financial concerns, and much more! You don’t want to miss this helpful episode!
Getting Started in an International Market
Have you thought about taking your brand to the next level of growth? What does that look like for you? Do you expand to multiple products to grow your brand or do you move your successful products to a growing international marketplace? On this episode of The Amazing Seller, you’ll hear from guest expert Lucy Marshall. Lucy explains how sellers like you can begin to take steps to move your brand into a new market like the UK for example. Expanding to the UK can provide a lot of benefits for US based sellers who are looking to take their brand to the next level of growth. Make sure to listen to this episode with Lucy to get more details on how to get started in a new market!
Optimize Your Product Listing for Language Differences
There are a lot of factors to consider when you look to move your brand from a familiar market to an international market. It is vital for sellers who are starting to make their move into a new market to do the proper research needed to make that move a success. On this episode of The Amazing Seller, Lucy Marshall touches on the subject of language and cultural barriers that could hinder a seller's success in a new marketplace. The example that Lucy gives is how people in the UK refer to pants as trousers, even though it is the same language as the US, there are cultural barriers that still exist. To hear more helpful insights like this one from Lucy, make sure to listen to this episode!
Be Aware of Restricted Products
There are a lot of issues that can come up with expanding your brand to a new country. One of the often overlooked issues is making sure that you are aware of that country's particular set of restrictions. On this episode of The Amazing Seller, guest expert Lucy Marshall opens up about how to stay within compliance and make sure you aren’t violating the restrictions of the country you are expanding your brand to. If you are moving your brand toward this direction, you want to make sure you don’t miss this helpful and informative episode!
Navigating Monetary Conversions and Payment Issues
What are some primary obstacles that are standing in your way to expanding your brand into an international market? Are you concerned about the logistics? The profitability of the marketplace? What about converting your earnings into your currency? On this episode of The Amazing Seller, Lucy Marshall addresses all those concerns and more! The company Lucy works for, World First, offers professional and efficient solutions for sellers like you who are concerned about monetary and payment issues when it comes to expanding your brand in a new market. Learn about what Lucy and her team at World First can do to help you take that next big step on this episode!
OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE AMAZING SELLER
- [0:03] Scott introduces this episode of the podcast!
- [4:00] Lucy Marshall joins the podcast.
- [10:00] Lucy explains how an ecommerce seller can start in a new international marketplace.
- [15:00] Make sure to do your research and know your fulfillment options.
- [20:00] Optimize your listing based on language and culture.
- [22:00] Be aware of restricted products.
- [24:30] Dealing with monetary conversions and payments.
- [32:00] Closing thoughts and insights from Lucy.
TRANSCRIPT TAS 413
TAS 413: How to Expand Your Brand and Products Globally with Lucy Marshall
[00:00:03] Scott: Well hey, hey what’s up everyone! Welcome back to another episode of The Amazing Seller Podcast. This is episode number 413 and today we’re going to be talking about a topic…
….that I’m very interested in and probably going to be doing here in 2018 and that is expanding your brand and products globally. You might have heard about doing this and you might be like me thinking, “Wow, there’s probably a lot that needs to go into this thing and what does all this stuff mean as far as like that and VAT and all these different terminologies and how do you transfer money from the country that you sold it into, the US or vice versa.”
What does it take? To me there’s a lot of different questions that need to be answered. I did have Jason McGee, a good friend of mine. I met him through Jeff Cohen from Seller Labs but he actually works for a company World First, that helps sellers like us transfer that money and actually get you a better rate and all of that stuff, but he came on to give us some tips back in episode 360.
If you did not catch that episode, I would definitely say, “Go listen to that one after this episode.” But I was introduced to today’s guest, Lucy Marshall, through Jason McGee. They actually work together and combined, the two of them have a ton of experience helping a lot of different sellers, international sellers or people that are just starting, that want to go international and they know what it takes.
They also have something really important and that’s connections. So, when I do decide to go globally, I will be using these guys as my resource, trust me. That is definitely who I’m going to be using. Now, let me just give you a little bit of a back story on Lucy.
She is a graduate of the University of Georgia. She currently manages ecommerce partnerships for World First. Prior to her working for World First, she worked for a private label brand with focus on driving B to B and B to C ecommerce sales.
[00:02:00] Scott: So, she is no stranger to private labeling, and that’s what I love about this. I’m not going out there and finding someone that kind of knows a little bit about it. She knows a lot about it because she’s been in the trenches. She’s also directly sold in multiple channels with different ecommerce businesses and she was able to help these companies make a positive gain or impact their sales by generating sales outside of just the one channel. We are talking channels say like globally but we can be talking other platforms.
She has spent the past two years with World First, but also focusing on helping US Amazon sellers successfully expand their businesses in the new markets and that’s why I wanted to have her on. Because now, she’s really concentrating and developing partnerships with other ecommerce people, businesses, in the space, us, and then bringing them to the market. That’s why I can’t wait for you guys to listen to this conversation because I just wanted to get down to business and get through this stuff.
So that’s what you have to look forward to today so if you are at all interested in selling globally, whether it’s now or whether it’s in the future, this is going to be a great episode for you and then I will also link up in the show notes, episode 360, where I had Jason McGee on, who is also someone that works with World First and also right alongside Lucy Marshall.
Guys I’m going to stop talking now so you guys can enjoy this. The show notes can be found at theamazingseller.com/413. You’re going to definitely want to grab those because there’s a lot of meat here and you are going to want to grab those when you are ready or if you are ready now, you'll have it all in one place. All right guys, so sit back, relax and enjoy this interview that I did with Lucy Marshall.
[00:03:49] Scott: Hey Lucy, thank you so much for coming on the podcast, how are you doing today?
[00:03:52] Lucy: I’m doing so well. Thanks so much for having me Scott, I appreciate it.
[00:03:55] Scott: Yeah, it’s kind of like your Friday today though, you just told me. You’re going to be going for a hike, I’m jealous.
[00:04:01] Lucy: I know, I’m psyched. It’s the fastest work week I’ve ever had, it's only Tuesday right now.
[00:04:06] Scott: Yeah, the time I recording this is Tuesday. I said yeah, the week just getting started. You were, “No, no actually it's coming to the end for me, I’m going to be going hiking”, I’m like, “Damn that sounds fun.” Cool.
[00:04:15] Lucy: Yah, I’m clocking out at three.
[00:04:17] Scott: Yeah, that’s awesome, that will be fun. All right, I wanted to get you on the podcast to really kind of go through, and kind of give people, I guess the overview kind of like what it takes to expand the ecommerce business globally and really what they need to understand. Because there’s a lot of moving pieces, a lot of people make it sound easy and I know myself, I have not went global yet, considering it but we’re not there yet, we are trying to really dial things in, in the US market first and then from there we can start to go a little bit more global.
So, I really want you to kind of give us all of the ins and the outs but in a way that we can digest it and make it where we can understand it and also be aware of some of the things that you need to be aware of, that it’s not that easy. It’s like you have to go through these things, so this way here we are prepared and we know what we are going to be up against when we decide to get going.
[00:05:15] Lucy: Absolutely, and Scott to your point, I've been working at World First pretty closely with ecommerce sellers who are working to grow their brand, they’re really interested in taking advantage of the opportunity in those global markets. Right now, Amazon has over 11 store front marketplaces globally, they’ve customers in 185 countries and ecommerce still only makes up for 10% of overall commerce. So, in terms of opportunity, there’s huge sales potential in these countries with west competition, the markets are not exaggerated as the US but they’re still getting almost as many unique views as the US.
[00:06:02] Scott: That’s exciting but also for me I think to myself, “Okay, now I got to set up different business entities and all of this stuff.” And I know that you’re going to kind of go through all that stuff because that is the scary part of it. If it was just me saying like, “Sure just sell my stuff globally, it sounds great,” but there are some things that we need to be aware of. I want people to also know that you’ve actually worked very closely with private label brands even before, I believe that you were working for World First, is that correct?
[00:06:35] Lucy: Yeah, so I was working for a small brand back in D.C and we had both B2B and B2C business and we were really working on growing our ecommerce channels and working fairly closely with Amazon distributors in addition to selling on our ecommerce site. What I’m learning in retrospect kind of looking at that, we really saw that one Amazon distributor that we worked with, that was selling, we were selling to B2B but that dramatically spiked our sales from that one account.
What I’m learning now is how much more beneficial that would have been to manage our own Amazon store front, really figure out a way to better distribute those sales and get that higher margin as we were selling at the retail price point across multiple channels.
[00:07:24] Scott: Okay, and I just kind of wanted to highlight that because I want people to understand. You are actually someone that’s been in it as far as like in the trenches and you still kind of are because you are working with businesses but it’s kind of like you understand the private label model, you know what I mean? You get it.
[00:07:40] Lucy: Yeah, absolutely, and the headaches from shipping from maybe a new manufacturer in China, getting it to fulfillment, making sure everything is coming in correctly, because we certainly had challenges with that along the way. It’s not an easy thing to manage by any stretch but certainly once you do go through all that leg work of getting your product manufacturing, going through all the branding, creating the listing optimization and the awareness, you really want to be able to spike those sales and take advantage of every market place you could be selling on. So, I’m kind of curious Scott, from your perspective, what are your biggest hurdles right now in terms of potentially making that expansion globally?
[00:08:22] Scott: Okay, so here is the thing that comes to mind, I love this actually, how you kind of reversed it on me because it's actually where we are. I love that actually by the way whenever my guests do that. They are like, “Scott, let’s sit down and talk about your personal problems.” I like that. It’s real because we have a new brand that I’m partnered with and I’m super excited about this brand.
I think there is a big potential for this brand, I’m talking seven-figure brand, maybe more. I see a big potential for this brand. We are building in as a brand, we are not building it as just like a one-off product or even like an open brand concept. It’s like specifically going to be targeting certain markets but we are just ramping things up now. I think we have like nine or 10 SKUs. Our problem right now is inventory, is keeping inventory in stock, which is a good problem to have but it’s still at managing the finances, the cash flow and all that stuff.
So, then when I start to think about introducing another market place, I think, number one, legal entity, number one comes to mind. Secondly, I think to myself, “Okay, I need to supply another fulfillment center with more product,” because they are not going to take this stuff unless you tell me that I’m not correct in thinking this but the stuff that I ship in to Amazon here is not going to be served over in the UK market.
So, I have to have to a central location over there that that can be a distribution center for my other products. If I’m going to order 3,000 units here, I’ve got to order another 3,000 for there or maybe 1,500 for there. So now I have two different lines of inventory that I’m going to have to manage, not to mention just the banking side of things. So, those are like the main things that come to mind and that’s what kind of like, “Before we go there, let’s make sure we get everything going here and then we can start thinking about the next thing,” so educate me.
[00:10:08] Lucy: All right, perfect. Well, let’s kind of look at those pain points you just mentioned and walk through them. So, in terms of creating an entity in each country location, you don’t actually have to do that to sell on Amazon marketplaces. Most of the clients we work with are registered in the US, they have the LLC and because they work with us specifically, they are able to have a banking solution in each country without having to go through that additional registration process.
What you will need to register for in every county you are selling in is a VAT number. This just stands for Value Added Tax. It’s really for the UK and EU and that’s so you can pay the government your taxes. The UK government saw that they lost over 1.2 billion in taxes from international Amazon sellers that had not registered and deployed their VAT number. So that is something Amazon is diligently cracking down on this year. If you don’t have it there is a potential to get shut down on your storefronts, you really just want to make sure that you have that covered.
Traditionally this has taken three to six weeks to get set up but what’s interesting that Amazon is about to roll out is they are working with VAT providers to do that in-house. So, Amazon’s new solution to get VAT numbers registered, that’s going to be faster and cheaper than going through the traditional routes right now. So, they are making that really easy because they are trying to bring more sellers to these global markets to, A, make more products available in those markets and, B, bring more western products to the rest of the world.
[00:11:53] Scott: Okay, and that makes sense, like they want to basically make it easier for us actually to, Amazon that is, they want to make it easier for us because they don’t want that to be an issue. So, we don’t sell, and I get that. So as of right now though, for me I have to think to myself, “Okay, how do I get the VAT? What do they need when I go through that process? And then when I also go through that process, is it another thing like for us here like sales tax, we have to calculate that? That’s another thing that monthly has to get sent or clear quarterly taxes.”So, all of those things start to come in mind, I got another tax ID somewhere, what does that mean for the company and who’s going to manage that?
[00:12:35] Lucy: Sure, and there are, I have accounts that have managed that themselves and chosen to be very diligent in working out the rules. For me personally I don’t do my own taxes, so like I always… That’s something I find someone to help me with especially going into, if your business is going into a different country, I would recommend working with a provider. Making sure that you have all the paperwork in correctly and then that is something you pay quarterly to the government.
[00:13:04] Scott: Just so I understand, the VAT number, the taxes, what is the taxes that is required from me as being someone that’s selling in the UK now? Is it kind of like a sales tax that gets added to the purchase price and then they have to pay it, then I have to just send it in or is it actually like a quarterly IRS tax where it’s on my money that I’m making?
[00:13:31] Lucy: I believe it is off the price of your product. So, you do have to factor in that Value Added Tax into the price of your product. So, it’s not the same as the US where you have your price and then the sales tax that gets added to it and then you check out. That's something you do have to factor into your pricing as you are going into these new markets. Additionally, you will need a number for each country you are shipping out of. So, if you are just shipping out of the UK, then you just need the VAT for the UK but if you are shipping into the rest of the pan-EU, that is something you will need as well.
[00:14:07]Scott: Okay. Is there resources out there of companies that will actually do that process for you that you know of or is that something you just have to do some research on?
[00:14:21] Lucy: There are companies say like, Meridian and AVASK that both help you set up the numbers, do the registration and then will talk you through what the pricing and what you should factor into for those global markets and then I believe some of the global re-pricers we work with are able to work with you in making sure that your products are correctly priced for where you are selling as well to include that.
[00:14:46] Scott: Got you. Okay, so that’s something that definitely has to be figured in and we have to kind of like figure out that part of it but that is a hurdle that we will have to overcome but it’s not something that you can’t overcome it’s just a matter of kind of doing it, getting that system in place and doing it.
So that’s like, and that’s kind of a big one in the beginning because you are thinking yourself like, “This is going to be more paperwork, this is going to be more, I’m kind of like on the map now as a business in another country and yada-yada-yada.” So you start to think this up. So, you have to say to yourself, “Is that worth the gain that you’re going to get from the sales coming in from this other country? Because if you do all this work now and then you see that your sales aren’t really where they are, is a matter of is it even worth to sale in there anymore?
[00:15:33] Lucy: Right, and that is research you should be doing right off the bat, the same research that you were doing to start a part of that label brand on an Amazon storefront where that’s looking at the BSR, looking at rankings and ratings, you should be doing that in these global markets as well, because the last thing you want to do is ship product over there without doing that research and then have it not move and then you’ve got 3,000 units in Germany so that’s absolutely something you want to do.
I know Amazon’s global business team has worked to do some of that analysis, with sellers and there are other third-party companies as well that will do analysis in those foreign markets so that way you can have a better sense of, alright, this would be my margin if I’m selling here and this is the opportunity for my business.
[00:16:22]Scott: Got you, okay, so we got to do a little bit of research as we would in any other market. What about the fulfillment now? What’s the fulfillment solution? Because to me it’s like, all right, if I’m just selling in three different countries, do I ship to three different countries now, so I have three different batches of inventory that I have to send in on top of the US one?
[00:16:45] Lucy: To the best of my knowledge right now, Amazon has what’s called the Pan EU program and what you can do if you are signed up for this is, ship a container, or limited container load over to that initial Amazon FBA site and then they will distribute for you based on those markets. So, going to the UK and EU to the best of my knowledge right now, that’s just one freight load you have to get over there.
Additionally, if you don’t want to expand to all of those markets you could potentially just start with UK and just ship to Amazon’s UK fulfillment center. This might be a great option because there is also no translation barrier in that market place especially for private label sellers who have to redo all of their listings, make sure everything’s localized in the country. Not having that big language barrier is a really easy first step and that is one of the largest markets outside of the US. So, I certainly encourage clients to look into expanding that way first.
[00:17:50]Scott: Okay, so you’re saying the UK is probably one of the more popular ones or the ones that would be probably I’d first start to look into?
[00:18:00] Lucy: Yeah, in terms of size of sales and revenue coming in, I believe it’s US, Germany and the UK. With all of the UK and EU getting almost the same unique views per month that the US is, so that is certainly a large market.
[00:18:15] Scott: Yeah, I’ve been hearing Germany has started to sound like it’s started to really pick up and again, but that’s one of those things too that maybe translation issue, because if things are being purchased in Germany then possibly it’s going to have to be translated into German. So, I guess that’s another factor that you have to figure into and you’ve got to look at the sales, again if we are looking at the sales and we are looking at potential, then that’s got to be factored in as well.
I’m looking at your notes here and again shipping and logistics you have here because you have to kind of figure that stuff out and you have here a lot of times if you’re shipping depending on the size and all that stuff, that could play a factor, lightweight items generally work better but it doesn’t mean that the heavier ones won't if the profit margin is there, can you speak a little bit to that?
[00:19:08]Lucy: We have clients that fulfill a variety of different ways. We have those that, and it's usually those with the slightly larger products, maybe it makes more sense from a weight in shipping prospective do a freight or container palette load over to at the Amazon FBA centers in the UK and EU and then they chose to fulfill that way.
We do have some very large clients here in the states that are selling smaller items like vitamins or health and beauty products and they are choosing to do personal shipments just directly to the customer in the UK and EU, then making customer where it’s going to take a couple of more days but they find that works best for their business and then they can still fulfill from their warehouse in the states without having any of the additional FBA fees or worrying about where their additional inventory is.
[00:19:58] Scott: Okay, that makes sense. The other thing you have here is, are your products localized for the storefront? So, let’s talk about that really quickly.
[00:20:08] Lucy: So, one of my favorite examples of this is I was talking to a client one day and he was selling clothes and he was like, “I realized why my sales in the UK have been lagging.” And I was like, “Why is that?” He says, “I keep calling them pants, and no one in the UK is trying to buy pants, they all look for trousers when they are doing their listing optimization or their search words.”
It’s one of those things where you need to be aware of the nuances of language and working with translation companies can really help you to do this, there are starting to be more and more global listing companies that will help you optimize and help you do the keywords in those different languages just to make sure that you are listing your products the way that specific consumer is shopping.
[00:20:51]Scott: Got you. Okay, that makes total sense. We’ve kind of used that example even here in the States, it’s like different state to state they talk about like sneakers here in the south are tennis shoes. So it’s like, “I wouldn’t call them that because I’m not originally from here in South Carolina, which I am now but it’s when I call them sneakers, it's like, “Oh! you mean tennis shoes?” It’s like, “Yeah, I guess so…
[00:21:13] Lucy: Yeah.
[00:21:13] Scott: Yeah, soda is pop sometime. It’s just different ways to describe it and that can make a huge difference depending but yeah, translation I can see it could be a huge thing and that’s again where you have to understand if you’re going into a market that is different especially into a foreign market, it most likely is going to be described as something different.
That’s a great point. Again, here I’m just looking through your notes here and you really do stress that. A lot of times it's going to be easier if you deal with UK because of that language is there. It’s not anything different we don’t have to really worry about optimizing differently really. We can pretty much just take what we have and make sure we do the research, but then adapt it to the UK market and then just see what happens at that point.
[00:22:06] Lucy: Absolutely and because even with some of the exchange rates because you’re able to even price those products a little bit higher and then you’re getting the return from the pound or dollars as well. I love the option of expanding to the UK because I think the sales are there, the exchange rate is there and then you don’t have that additional burden of translation and just a little bit of localizing that you have to do on that marketplace.
[00:22:32] Scott: Got you, and the other thing I see here you have a note as, “Make sure none of the ingredients in your products are restricted.”
[00:22:40] Lucy: Right, so that’s another thing you have to be really aware about. That’s different for every country you’re selling in. Each government have its own set of instructions and set of ingredients that, okay or not okay, you’re approved by their health associations. You do have to really make sure and just double do your due diligence especially if you are selling something like health and beauty or vitamins.
If they are private label as well to make sure that none of your ingredients are restricted. I know perfume is another really big one that can get you suspended if you’re not looking at those lists.
[00:23:18] Scott: Yeah, and again that’s the same thing in the States. You have to understand especially if you’re getting into topical or things that you’re putting on your skin or the things that you’re putting in your mouth or any of that stuff. You have to be really careful with that stuff. Definitely make sure you do the research on that for sure.
Okay, so lastly in this equation of really getting our products out there globally we’ve went through getting the VAT or at least how that works. Then from there we’re talking about getting our product over there and doing our research, making sure that the sales are going to be at least a potential there for that market.
You’re saying probably start with one marketplace rather than going to all 11, so this way here you can get through that process. The last part of it is how do we get our money now? How do we bring our fans back to us and how do we do it effectively? That’s where I think World First is going to come in and that’s what I want you to really dig into now.
[00:24:22] Lucy: Yes, and especially after going through all those steps I’m like, “We’re definitely the easiest to get set up,” which is probably beneficial for everyone to hear but just so everyone is aware. When you are selling on a marketplace and you’re based in the States, a marketplace like Amazon will handle that conversion for you. If you’re selling in the UK they’ll send your pounds back to Dollars but they are taking a pretty hefty percent out of that.
The benefit of working with World First is we’re able to open a domestic in country receiving accounts for you in every country that you’re selling in. If you’re selling in the UK, you would have a pound account, EU we'd have Euros and then that’s also available in Japan, China, Australia and Canada as well.
You have one online login and then you’re able to manage all of those currencies from one place. Manage your transfers and have a dedicated in-house relationship manager who’s able to look at when the rates are going to be volatile say, “Hey maybe you should look at booking a forward contract for the next six months because this is predicted coming down the tracks.”
It’s really beneficial to have someone in your corner to make sure that you’re aware of what’s coming down the tracks with rates. In addition to that, having more control over your money and bringing more money home from those store fronts.
[00:25:52] Scott: Okay, so lead me through if I didn’t have a company like World First to actually do that. How does it work? I get paid every two weeks from Amazon right now. Does it just automatically, like once I set up my account for selling in the UK, do they just automatically then just convert it and then just send it to me in US dollars?
[00:26:14] Lucy: Yes, so in your Seller Central you would list your US bank account if you didn’t have one in the UK already. You would still continue to get those bi-weekly disperse and they’ll just show up in your account. The most common thing when I ask sellers, “How are you bringing your sales home?” They just say, “Well, Amazon is doing that.” Then I ask, “Are you aware of the rate that they are giving you to send that back?”
They’re for the most part unaware that there is even a conversion happening because Amazon is not transparent of when or at what rate they’re actually sending your funds. It’s been my experience that can be anywhere between 3% to 4% of that bottom line. We can definitely be more competitive on those rates and it ends up over the course of the year saving you potentially hundreds or thousands of dollars that you can then reinvest to put more inventory in those FBA spaces.
[00:27:13] Scott: Okay, and again just to distill this down, so my money comes in from the UK into an account that I set up over there but then when it gets translated or gets converted, and then Amazon is going to help us with that but they’re going to charge us 3% to 4% to do that. I mean I’m just taking a number out there.
[00:27:33] Lucy: Yes.
[00:27:33] Scott: They’re going to charge us a percentage to do that.
[00:27:36] Lucy: Yes.
[00:27:37] Scott: What you’re saying is if I use the company like yours, you’re going to do that for us at a lesser of a rate and that’s where I’m going to make additional money that’s actually my money anyway. It’s like getting a better percentage rate on my loan that I have maybe.
[00:27:50] Lucy: Essentially yes and these accounts are free to open and free to maintain and the one thing we really pride ourselves on as well is transparency. The other thing I would say that you’re losing out on when using Amazon to manage your currency conversion is the lack of transparency and the lack of ability to control your own transfers.
[00:28:11] Scott: Okay.
[00:28:12] Lucy: Brexit is a great example of this. We had clients who had received funds and they had maybe been collecting their funds for a couple of weeks because they hadn’t been ready to make a transfer. Then they transferred it right before Brexit happened. When Brexit happened, we saw I believe a 10% move in the rates against the favor of the seller. By virtue of those sellers being in control of their funds and being in control of when they could move them, they got a much better rate because they moved it before we saw that big slide.
[00:28:43] Scott: Got you, so it’s like knowing when to pull the money or being able to look at the rate and saying, “I don’t need the money to be pulled right this second. I’m going to wait and see if the rate is better in a week.” Something like that.
[00:28:56] Lucy: Right, yes and it depends on your cash flow and it depends on when you want to move your money and again mitigating risk it often becomes a bit easier to just keep trading consistently. If you know there is going to be a bit of volatility and you want to wait that out you have the ability to leave your funds in the account or transfer them depending on whether or not you need the funds.
[00:29:21] Scott: What I’m thinking to myself so I’m thinking cash flow. I’m thinking I can’t tie up my money. I need that money to come back in, reinvest in inventory, maybe pull up my profit, for whatever paying employees whatever. If that’s the case, is there a way that I can lock in a rate at all or is there or is it always going to be floating?
[00:29:44] Lucy: You can lock in what we call forward contracts, so let’s say you are expecting to move half a million dollars in sales over the next six months. You are able to lock in a rate for that time for that and we would need a deposit to do that.
The benefit of doing that, the rates will continue to fluctuate over that time but by buying a rate that you are comfortable with, you are then protecting your price margin because you know exactly what you’re going to be getting back every time. Then you just have consistency in the way you’re moving your business.
[00:30:21] Scott: Got you.
[00:30:22] Lucy: We do have clients that are locking in that rate and then trading down from that as a way to just mitigate that risk long term if they’re expecting to move a lot in sales.
[00:30:33] Scott: Is there a common thing that people are doing or businesses that are doing this when using your services? Is there a common thing or there are people just allowing the market to fluctuate?
[00:30:46] Lucy: It depends truly on the business and what their cash flow is. We have clients that do strictly forward contracts and then we have others that just go by the daily rate because they know some days it will be up, some days it will be down. We have absolute easier control over the rates so the only thing we can advise on is that it’s going to constantly be moving. It’s just kind of completely depends on their business.
[00:31:15]Scott: Okay, yeah and it makes it I guess it’s one of the things that you wouldn’t need to worry about. I mean, obviously when I’m ready to go global I’ll be definitely reaching out and really using you guys because I know that it’s something that I’m not going to want to deal with and I’m also going to want to save some money if I can. You know what I mean like with my margin.
[00:31:37] Lucy: Yeah.
[00:31:37] Scott: That’s something like and I feel as though you guys are and there is probably other companies out there that are, well, I don’t want to say that they are not trustworthy, but I like to know who I’m doing business with.
I know that you’re a huge part of the team over there and really understanding the process for a private label I also think it’s another big one, because it’s not always the same as just a regular traditional business. I do appreciate you giving us the ins and the outs. Is there any other thing that you want to add that you think that we need to know about going global?
[00:32:17] Lucy: Truthfully, I think it’s once you get in there and really being able to expand your product and understand there is so much more that you can do once you are over there in terms of listing optimization, in terms of keyword research.
Those are sort of the smaller steps towards a big step and once you are on those places there is so much more you can do to really start those sales and continue to make relationships with new providers who can really help grow in those market places.
I would say it’s really similar and probably in a lot of regards to selling on the Amazon in the US, in the sense that there is always something changing. There is always something new down the tracks. Just be prepared for that flexibility and that opportunity again in these new marketplaces.
[00:33:05] Scott: Cool, yeah, I love it. Again, there is some steps that need to be done but I think again if you’ve done the research, if you know that there is a market there for your products then it’s definitely something that you should be looking into and possibly launching your products across other marketplaces. I mean it’s an old brainer but you have to get through those steps.
By you sharing these with us I think that’s given us definitely an outline. I will link everything up in the show notes. If you guys want to learn more about World First you can head over to theamazingseller.com/WorldFirst and can anyone reach out to you guys there and speak to someone about this or can they email someone? How would that work?
[00:33:49] Lucy: Absolutely you can just email me my email is firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m more than happy to answer any and all questions anyone has and if you need help getting started I’ll walk through that process as well.
[00:34:06] Scott: That would be awesome, yeah, okay so then that’s what I’m going to do, I’m going to link everything up in the show notes, I’ll link your email up and I’ll also leave the direct link, so this way here they can go to World First check it all out. I think they’re definitely going to want to probably reach out especially if they’re thinking about launching and getting everything set up and that would be awesome.
I really appreciate it Lucy for coming on and sharing this and I’m sure we’ll have you back on too because you have your hands in the marketplace in other people’s brands which is interesting. I always love to be able to hear as far as especially in this side of things I don’t have a lot of experience. It’s always an education for me, so I want to thank you once again. I want to wish you luck on your hike by the way and have fun.
[00:34:47] Lucy: Thank you so much.
[00:34:49] Scott: Yeah, no problem and yeah, we’ll definitely keep in touch and again I want to just say thanks for coming on.
[00:34:54] Lucy: All right, perfect thanks so much Scott.
[00:34:58] Scott: Okay, so this is one thing that I want to say here connections, connections, connections. This is what it’s all about and it doesn’t matter what business you are in when you have the right people that you can reach out to resources that is people like Lucy Marshall and World First. It is going to make it easier for you to expand your business, whether that’s in a new marketplace.
Whether that’s in a new country that you want to be able to sell into or just anything. Anything in business to be able to go out there and learn from people that are actually doing it because we’re not going to be able to be the expert in every single thing that we do. If we had the right connections and here is the deal, these guys have their own connections that they get to connect you with.
That’s why I love this podcast because now I have two really awesome connections. I have Lucy and I have Jason McGee. I feel really grateful to have those connections but now also to give you guys those connections and that’s really what it’s all about depending on where you are in your journey, when you decide to go global if you do at all or just other platforms. This is a resource for you.
I’m going to go ahead and give you guys the link directly to go to their website and their company’s website. Then you can get more information and you can find that by heading over to theamazingseller.com/WorldFirst, all right and you’ll get all the information over there.
There is no spaces or anything, it’s just theamazingseller.com/WorldFirst and you’ll get that or you’ll go on their website and you’ll be able to reach out to those guys or just send them an email. I’ll also go ahead and I’ll link up their emails both of them Jason and Lucy in the show notes. I’ll also put the link to the website there as well. Yeah, there is a lot that goes on. There is a lot of things that go into globally selling your products.
[00:37:02] Scott: That’s okay but you can also see these guys know exactly what it takes and they want you and me to be able to get up and running on another platform and you can hear how Lucy said like not every platform is right for you right now. Not every channel is right for you right now.
Go after the low hanging fruit again if you’re selling a product in Germany, it’s going to be a little bit harder maybe for you because you have to do some translation than if you just went to the UK. You can hear all of the things that we discussed is there for you to take advantage of what is already there for you without having to do a ton more work.
Then also for them to eliminate anything as far as or any issues as far transferring the money from one place to the other and then them also connecting you with other people that can help you with the fulfillment and all of that stuff. I can’t say enough, connections are huge and I will definitely reach out to those guys if you are at all interested in learning more about it or maybe even if you just had a question.
They are so willing to give and to share. I would definitely reach out to those guys over there at World First. Again guys theamazingseller.com/WorldFirst. I’ll put them up on the resources page and I’ll put them up on the show notes page and you’re probably going to want to grab the transcripts and the show notes to today’s episode.
Head over to theamazingseller.com/413 you’ll get all that stuff there and I do plan on having these guys back on again because there is just so much more that we can dig into. Definitely look for an upcoming episode in the future. That’s pretty much going to wrap it up guys. I did want to just say thank you so much for being a listener, thank you so much for taking time out of your day and listening to the podcast.
I also want to thank everyone that is part of our TAS community over there on Facebook we are over 50,000 strong now over there and there is a ton of great people there. If you’re not part of that I definitely would encourage you to go over there and be a part of that amazing community. Head over to theamazingseller.com/fb and just get involved and reach out and make those connections.
All right guys, so that’s it that’s going to wrap it up. Remember as always, I’m here for you, I believe in you and I am rooting for you but you have to… Come on say it with me, say it loud, say it proud, “Take Action.” Have an awesome amazing day and I’ll see you right back here on the next episode.
LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE
- Email: lucy.marshall[at]worldfirst.com
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