Exporting: Lesson 4

Export Market Plan

Gregory Jones, a small business specialist with the Tennessee Small Business Development Center, discusses export market plan. 


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Video Lesson Topics

- Considerations

You need to identify and consider several things before you export your business or product.

  • Identify the market that you intend to answer.
  • Identify the product and the service that you would like to provide.
  • The cost and the pitfalls within that particular country.
  • How will this be financed?
  • What are the resources available to you?

- Schedule B Number

One tool to utilize early would be your Schedule B number. The Schedule B number is what classifies your product and your service. It will dictate your tariffs, tax rates, ability to search how much of that product is being exported to a particular country, and their utilization. Finding out the Schedule B number is paramount as you research your specific product and service. You can find your schedule B number from the US Census Bureau’s website.

- Market Research

Conducting market research is essential when looking to export your product or service. As you would conduct market research here in the United States, you would also want to do that within the country that you’re looking at.
There are several resources to conduct market research.

- Resources

  • Export.gov is a great free resource. You will be able to access commercial country guides.
  • Commercial country guides are provided by the US embassies. These guides will give you information on the market and political conditions within a country and the economic forecasts for that particular country.
  • Your local library has subscriptions to these databases and research platforms. As long as you have a library card, you will access these resources. Information the library will have can include country demographics and consumer purchasing habits.
  • In addition, several other websites are available for you to get information that the federal government provides that is at no cost to you.

- Special Challenges

Special challenges could be whether or not your product or service needs to have an export license. If your product or service is something that the US government might regulate, you may not be able to sell certain products to certain countries on a watch list. Or that particular product may be something that can be used to create a device that the government regulates. Sometimes, language can be a barrier. Your product or company name may mean something very different in another country. You may have to change your labeling and the name of your product. How will you get your product over their transportation? Will you ship it by the ship within the container? Or is it something small where you can use UPS or one of the other shipping companies within that? These could potentially be an issue and things that will be addressed within your export market plan.

Topics & Lessons

Each Below Topic Contains a Video Lesson and Helpful Downloadable Information


Why Export?


Benefits and Risks


Export Readiness


Export Market Plan


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