After the occurrence of the pandemic, all business branches, and countries, as a matter of fact, the whole world, started a digital transformation process. While the companies that were prepared for this digitalization were adapting to this process in an easy way, companies that were caught unprepared floundered massively. 

Before the pandemic, many organizations and individuals that were occupied with foreign trade used to prefer traditional methods, which they were more accustomed to. As a result of physical travels that could not be made within the scope of health measures during the pandemic process, foreign trade companies resorted to digital ways to reach their existing customers and find new markets and customers. In this process, the ways of doing business in foreign trade began to reshape. As digital usage increases, many institutions go beyond the traditional methods they are used to, and started asking questions like “How can I do foreign trade on the Internet? and “How can I find customers digitally?”  

Read this article before you ask yourself “Is it possible to find customers online? If it is, how so?” and learn the best ways of finding customers online. Let’s jump right into the methods of finding customers online in foreign trade.  

1. Online Fairs & Tradeshows

With the onset of the pandemic, fairs that used to be physically held previously began to be held online in this process. In the new normal, many foreign tradeshows started to be held virtually. By participating in virtual fairs in the field in which you operate, you too can meet and communicate with people in your own field. 

2. Online Foreign Trade Trainings & Events

There are many pieces of training, webinars, and events organized by the Chamber of Commerce of many cities around the world. You can reach the names of the participating companies and establish commercial relations with the companies, by participating in these online pieces of training and events suitable for the sector in which you operate. 

3. Search Engines & Events

Many companies around the world save their business data on Google because they want their company to appear digitally too, just like you do. You can search for companies that are available for import and/or export by entering the country, city, and product-related keywords into Google, the most widely used search engine all over the world, and you can contact these companies online. 

4. Websites of Ministry of Commerce

If you are capable of reading, listening, and speaking in languages other than your own, you can find new customers by visiting the official foreign trade websites of other countries.  Likewise, it is possible to find new markets and customers free of charge on the website of the Ministry of Commerce in your country and the websites operating under the ministry. 

5. Digital Ads

You can promote your company, your products, or the services you offer to the world by placing paid Google Ads for your products or services. This method will be much more effective, of course, if you place these advertisements in English or in the local language of the country where you want to enter the market and find customers.

6. Social Media Accounts, Pages, and Groups

Facebook is widely used in some regions such as the Middle East and Africa, and Facebook pages and groups work effectively in these countries. Or Instagram might be a good option for you, depending on your industry and product of course. By choosing the language settings of the country you want to enter the market of, you can find new customers by placing special Facebook , Instagram, and Linkedin ads for that country. 

7. Virtual Business Delegations

Commercial delegations, which were previously held face to face, were instead started to being held on virtual platforms without interruption during the pandemic process. With the organized virtual trade delegations, online bilateral business meetings are held over digital and so mutual business connections are being established.

8. B2B Foreign Trade Platforms

Thanks to B2B platforms, which generally work with a membership system, where buying and selling requests exist together, you can find new customers on the Internet without wasting your time and money on digital platforms. With platforms like Coimex, you can easily reach reliable foreign trade companies and establish trustworthy and sustainable business connections with them.  

Mutual trust, which is possibly the most important aspect of foreign trade, becomes even more essential in the digital world. Therefore, doing research from dependable sources and being involved in reliable digital platforms is a condition that should not be ignored in order to conduct authentic and sustainable foreign trade. 

If you still have questions and a distant stance towards digital, you can read our article on 8 Mistakes to Avoid While Going Digital in Foreign Trade and Their Solutions.

Comments are closed.