What has export got to do with me? Exporting – Mystique, Mystery or Madness?
All businesses, large and small are being encouraged to export, often for the first time, and the clamour with Brexit looming is growing ever louder.
“What”, I hear you ask, “has this got to do with me?”
Britain is a trading nation, but less than 30%1 of that trade is with other countries. Could we do more? Should we do more? Of course we should, and that answer has nothing to do with Brexit, but could have everything to do with you. The Brexit effect has simply highlighted how badly we have been doing for many years. Compare the UK with the EU total at 43% (Germany is 46%, Denmark 53%, Netherlands 81%!). British companies could, should and must export more.
Britain has been at the forefront of International trade for over 200 years. In 1817 David Ricardo, a Londoner, published his seminal book ‘On the Principals of Political Economy and Taxation’ (often called the Ricardian Model) which set out his theory of Comparative Advantage, the basis of international trading. His study looked at the trade between England and Portugal and this in turn followed on from Adam Smith’s theory of Absolute Advantage.
But what has this got to do with me and does it apply to me? Of course exporting is not an option for everyone, but it may be for more people than currently think so.
Do you sell a product that is unique, or just better than your competitors? Then maybe you could export it.
Do you have a product that you sell in towns and cities away from your home base? Then maybe you could export it.
Do you offer a service that attracts people from outside your locality? Then gaining customers from overseas maybe open for you as well, tourism is a major UK industry!
But I have heard that it is complicated and expensive and uncertain and I am not sure it is worth it. Really? Is that how you expanded your business in the UK? There are thousands of UK companies, large and small exporting every day and there is lots of support to help them.
Exporting may not be for everyone, but it is open to a lot more companies than currently try. British companies have a number of Great advantages, including (just a few):
Reputation for quality products
And never underestimate the advantage of the English Language
We started to export in 2015 and now a third of our sales go overseas to over 45 countries, opening up great opportunities for the future.
So why don’t you cut through the mystique, unravel the mystery and join the 200 Export Club, it would be madness not get out there and try.
Why not join in the conversation around British export by questioning your peers and sharing your own stories? Follow @200ExportClub on Twitter, or search ‘The 200 Export Club’ on LinkedIn to get involved.
1. World Bank 2016 - https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NE.EXP.GNFS.ZS