Why Export?

Did you know?

  • 95% of the population is outside the US
  • 60% of small businesses that export derive 20% of their earnings from exports
  • 97% of all exporters are small and medium-sized companies
  • 66% of export companies have fewer than 20 employees

Idaho is one of few states that has a trade surplus, meaning we export more than we import, so why not join our many successful exporters?

The Idaho SBDC’s Export Team, in collaboration with other statewide resources, has developed programs to position small- and medium-sized businesses to take maximum advantage of business and trade opportunities in the global marketplace. As a small business, how do you know if exporting is an option? We help you assess your current situation and export readiness from your current situation and your potential. Questions include:

Company Readiness

  1. Are you an established presence in your industry domestically?
  2. How extensive is your current domestic sales outreach?
  3. How do you sell and distribute your products in the domestic market?
  4. Do you customarily conduct market research and planning for your domestic operations?
  5. To what extent do you advertise and promote your products in the domestic market?
  6. Do any of your current managers or staff have export marketing or sales experience?
  7. Has your company received any unsolicited inquiries from foreign firms?
  8. Could you promptly fill any new export orders from present inventory or other sources?
  9. How would you handle any new or additional export business within your organization?
  10. What is the current status of your export activity?
  11. Is your top management committed to exporting as a new or expanded area of activity?
  12. How much per year could you afford to spend on export development?
  13. How long would your management be willing to wait to achieve acceptable export results?

Product Readiness

  1. Have domestic sales of your product grown over the past 3 years (average per year)?
  2. What is your product’s current share of the domestic market?
  3. Is your product price-competitive in the domestic market?
  4. What payment terms would you be willing to offer reputable foreign buyers?
  5. Does your product compare favorably with domestic competitors in features and benefits?
  6. Would you be willing to adapt your product and/or packaging to better suit foreign markets?
  7. Is your product costly to transport over long distances?
  8. Is any special training required to assemble, install or operate your product?
  9. Does your product require any special technical support or after-sale service?
  10. Can your product tolerate harsh or widely varying environmental conditions?

(From the California Centers for International Trade Development)

Key readiness factors include:

  • Management is committed to make it happen
  • You have strong product or service knowledge which includes the industry and competition.
  • You have adequate cash flow to support domestic business and possible expansion.
  • You have production capacity and capability to supply international buyers.

The Idaho SBDC can help with deciding the best way to enter a market – whether via co-production, wholly-owned ventures, joint ventures, or outsourcing projects.  We can assist with market identification and feasibility, financial issues, customs, regulations, taxes, tariffs, trade shows, etc. We can help you navigate resources in Idaho as well as in your target market. We work closely with US Commercial Services, Idaho Department of Commerce, TechHelp, and local colleges and universities to help design and implement an export strategy for your business..

Make an appointment to meet with one of our Export Team.