Running an import export venture is the ideal solution to making your own money on your own terms.
This is because it allows access to innovative products and lucrative markets fairly instantly. Plus, you can totally do it from home, which saves you the outlay of an office, and sell online, which saves you the cost of renting retail space.
In the current economic and employment climate, being a full time or part time entrepreneur is a wise way of securing your income. But let’s be honest, it’s hard to start you own business without taking on financial risk. Luckily there are ways of minimising this risk.
Running an import export venture is the ideal solution to making your own money on your own terms. This is because it allows access to innovative products and lucrative markets fairly instantly. Plus, you can totally do it from home, which saves you the outlay of an office, and sell online, which saves you the cost of renting retail space.
Whether you are starting out as an entrepreneur, expanding an existing business, or just setting up a side hustle, here are three key things to know about running an import export venture from home:
1. Your online image is key
You may work from a corner in your garage, but as long as everything you put online is professional, on-brand and impressive, you’re in business.
Take the time to set up decent social media and a good-looking website. Remember to clearly communicate why suppliers and clients should deal with you. In other words, highlight what sets you apart from the competition.
If you already have a website set up of local sales, don’t assume it is also suitable to your international venture.
Your online presence should speak directly to the audience you want to target, so appropriate optimisation will likely be necessary.
2. Registering your business protects you from loss
Most entrepreneurs start off trading as a sole proprietor (in their individual capacity) instead of registering a company, but this carries risk in the long run.
A registered business is a separate financial entity. This means your personal assets and funds cannot be seized to repay debts owed by your business if the venture doesn’t work out. Trading as a registered company also means you have separate liability.
If your company should therefore be involved in a lawsuit, your personal assets cannot be seized. Other benefits of business registration include protection of your brand, and a potential saving on income tax. Have a think before acquiring registrations, such as an import export license, in your individual capacity.
If you should register a company down the line, you’ll need to do all these registrations again in the company’s name. To minimise admin, traders often choose to get a company registration and import export license at the same time.
3. You don’t need a warehouse full of stock
You may cringe at the idea of unsold stock crowding up your house, or the outlay of renting storage space. Luckily there are many business models that don’t require much (or any) physical stock on hand. Basically put, your options are:
- Small products: Think in terms of jewellery, gemstones, watches, kids’ clothes, or any other product you can keep in a small space.
- Drop shipping: Where you order your imported or exported goods to be delivered directly to your client only when you make a sale.
- Merchanting: Which is like drop shipping except that both your supplier and your client are situated abroad. Merchanting is a fantastic business opportunity, providing you manage it according to the South African Reserve Bank’s requirements.
Of course, with any import export venture, getting you import export license is step one.
To obtain all the import export and business registrations you need in one convenient place, contact Import Export License. Their consultants will get you registered and set-up for international trade in no time.