The Nigerian Exporters’ Guide to Finding Foreign Buyers for Product

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The Nigerian Exporters Guide to Finding Foreign Buyers for Product
The Nigerian Exporters Guide to Finding Foreign Buyers for Product

No doubt, finding buyers for your export products would be one of your biggest challenges as an exporter, especially when you are just starting out or entering into a new market. Selling in an international market has never been simple—with diverse language, geographical distance, cultural differences, and lack of market knowledge posing real challenges to any exporter.

Yet, you must know how and where to find buyers for your export products, considering that having ready buyers is the only way to make headway in the export business. Finding buyers in an overseas market is now much easier than it used to be decades ago.
Now, there are many silver linings in the forms of friendly government policies, favorable international climate, less tariff or non-tariff barriers, and above all, the presence of and inexpensive access to the Internet. So, provided you plan well and play your cards right, you shouldn’t have much problems finding buyers for your export products. This post reveals tips for finding buyers for your export products which are as follows:

1. Contact government-owned foreign agencies-: In many countries, there are government-sponsored or government-controlled companies or agencies that usually import various commodities needed by local consumers—in bulk. These are sometimes called trading companies.
To connect with these foreign agencies, you need to conduct research to identify which countries your export would be great for, then contact the embassies such countries. Better yet, you can contact the companies or agencies directly in their own country.
However, you must bear in mind that most agencies are selective about what they import, and they may not necessarily be importing your own type of commodity—even if you strongly believe there’s a good market for it in that country.

2. Connect with buying agents-: Some foreign agencies are proactive and already have buying agents in countries that have abundant supplies of products needed in their home countries. If you have such foreign agencies in your country that are looking to buy your type of export products, then get in touch with them.
Again, your local embassy is a great place to look for these specific buying agents. However, the Internet is another powerful tool. Visit the official website of the country’s import-export agency, or simply search for local representatives. Be sure to communicate or deal with an official or officially accredited representative of the agency.

3. Contact foreign wholesalers-: There are wholesalers in virtually all countries. So, you can sell your export products to privately owned wholesale companies instead of government agencies. Dealing with private firms instead of government agencies is usually much quicker—and allowing them deal with the intricacies of importing is a big benefit, too.
Although you may have to settle for smaller margins when selling to wholesalers, the time you save trying to sell your export directly to the market may be well worth it. However, be aware that there are many fraudulent syndicates presenting as wholesalers. So, be careful when dealing with foreign wholesalers and don’t do business with any until you’ve verified their credibility.

4. Connect with commission agents-: Just as government-owned foreign agencies have their own local agents in your country; foreign privately-owned wholesale firms do, too. These agents are middlemen finding great export opportunities on behalf of the foreign wholesaler. They are easier to deal with and you can communicate easily with foreign distributors through them.

5. Hire your own sales person-: You will wear yourself out if you try to do all the work yourself. Just like foreign wholesalers have agents to find imports on their behalf, you can commission a sales representative to help you find individuals and firms that are looking to buy your export products.
Though you will have to pay the sales representative a fixed salary or percentage commissions, you will be able to focus your time and energy on manufacturing your product, searching for other markets, and other vital aspects of your export business.

6. Attract buyers-: While you will most likely have to proactively look for buyers, it’s possible to attract buyers, too–because they are also looking for you just as you are looking for them. And there are many strategies you can adopt to attract buyers to your export business. These include advertising in foreign magazines and newspapers published in your target countries as well as sponsoring trade shows in those countries.

7. Leverage on the Digital world-: It has changed each human being in the world widely for the past two decades. Information technology plays a vital role in all sectors especially in international business. Before 1990s, getting a contact of foreign buyer was a herculean task. In today’s world, all that has changed, business can be done “at the click of a mouse”. I will always say this, the first tool of international marketing as the utilization of internet service.


How to use the service of internet in marketing your product?

• Launching of a quality website is a reflection of your firm and you can update time to time with necessary information about your products. You will get credibility and initial respect on your product and your firm as well. Uploading images of your product, manufacturing unit, manufacturing process etc. boost your reliability in international market.

• Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plays a vital role in searching the content tags of your details by anyone looking for a supplier of product similar to yours.

• Joining and actively engaging in social media like face book, twitter, plaxo, linked in. Do not forget to regulate false comments by proper administration.

• You tube; flicker, e-magazines etc. also can be used to showcase your products in the export market.

• Writing articles on your website helps the readers of internet to identify your caliber in the trade.

8. Effective communication-: This plays an important role in business market. If you can effectively communicate with the buyer to convince the quality and price of your product, the buyer will surely take initiation to ask you send sample of your product and later place the order.

9. You can send samples as per buyer’s requirements-: While sending export samples, at least two sets of samples to be drawn properly. One you can send to the buyer and one can be retained with you. The sample you retained helps you to match with the sample you sent to buyer while manufacturing or procuring, once you obtain final purchase order from buyer.

10. Attending Trade fare-: Exhibit your product. There are many International Trade fairs conducted within the country and abroad, where you can exhibit your product to attract foreign buyers, use such opportunities to the advantage of your business.

11. Commodity Board-: This also plays a vital role in international marketing to help their members to find a foreign market. You can have a frequent contact with them for necessary sales leads to communicate.

12. Government Embassies-: Respective Government embassies extend their service in helping exporters to find an international market in their country.

13. Through contacts of friends and relatives-: Personal relationship of friends and relatives who resides abroad also helps to generate a good business relationship between buyer and seller for mutual benefits.

So there you go, if you understand and follow these tips closely, be sure to find and attract the right foreign buyers for your products online. For any enquiry or assistance, do not hesitate to contact Chibyke Global.

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