Jeff Cornwell has an article about the failure of US small business to export. A Study by UPS reveals:
“…..that most of America’s small and mid-sized businesses have failed to explore the significant growth opportunities offered by an increasingly global economy. Specifically, 67 percent of the nation’s small-to-mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) are still relying solely on the U.S. economy. This figure is surprisingly low given the increasing ease of importing and exporting in today’s economy.”
These numbers do not surprise me at all, in a survey we did in 2004 we found that the hurdles have been considerable:
- 36% finding local partners;
- 21% understanding local markets;
- 16% Financing export activities;
- 11% defining local customer profile;
- 11% language barriers;
- 5% other.
You can read more about our findings here. Having spent many hours in trade commissions around Europe, it is also clear to me that each country is interested in exporting activities of their own small businesses, but less helpful when it comes to importing. In fact the red-tape barriers are considerable.
My personal impression has always been, that many of the “advisors” still have a pre-internet mentality to export/import, which makes it even more difficult for small business to export. This coupled with a less than basic understanding of small business, makes for a poor export/import advisory infrastructure.
With the help of online technology we should see this changing, at least in the services industries. Even very small business and start-up business, like SOHO-, SME, SMB-, Micro-, Lifestyle-, Home-, DIY-, Hobby-, Boomer- or Personal business, like professional, contractors, freelancer, self-employed, sole-trader and virtual assistants, will find it less difficult to export their services, using services like LiveNet.
With LiveNet it is no longer important where on the planet you live, I call this Globelization 3.0. ST.