5 Tips for Managing International Business Transactions

Aug 13, 2020 Kevin Gardner Kevin Gardner

Taking your business global means managing new and complex logistics and transactions as well as navigating a new set of laws. There are risks and benefits associated with this and the better you manage the complexities of these transactions, the more benefits your company can expect. There are five main areas where you can get into some trouble with international business deals, and five tips you can use to better manage them.

Understand the Role of Reputation

The role of your reputation and those of the companies you partner with is incredibly important to the success or failure of international business pursuits. If your financial or banking partner has a good reputation domestically, but a poor one internationally, for example, then you can find it hard to secure deals or convert website visits to sales. The first step is to research the reputations of potential business partners so you can better weigh the risks and benefits of working with them. You can earn a global risk management degree online to help you better understand the role of reputation as well as learn the intricacies of international business transactions in more detail.

Start Slow and Have an Exit Strategy

With any risky business endeavor, you want a solid exit strategy if it starts to fail. For opening in international markets, this means starting slow with one product line and building up from there after the data starts coming in. If the market is not supportive of your products, then you will have lost a little time and money on the prospect; but if you build up the infrastructure to move your entire company internationally and the markets are not receptive, you can lose a lot. Having an exit strategy means also having a trial period written into the contracts so you do not have to choose between breaking a contract or sticking with a failing project.

Know the Customs and Border Policies

Not all products or services will be legal to ship overseas and some countries have stricter customs and border policies than others. International relationships between countries will affect your business deals and knowing how these policies are written and applied can mean the difference between getting your employees to critical business meetings on time or even your international customers receiving goods before the expiration date. Knowing how to package your items properly, what delays and inspections to expect, and even how to format labels in the countries where you do business is critical. A good logistics company can help you iron all of this out, provide warehousing and transportation services, and even let you track shipments through the process.

Find a Good Currency and Transaction Partner

International business transactions mean managing various forms of currency as well as exchange rates and transaction fees. Your transaction processing partner, payment platforms, and banks may be experienced in global transactions and have high levels of security but researching these things can bring you higher success and a better understanding of associated fees. For example, your bank may charge more for transactions originating in one country than in another because of applicable international banking laws, and you can choose whether to pay the higher fees or to avoid doing business in that country with more confidence once you do the research.

Iron Out Problem-Solving Procedures

Not all problems can be remotely solved or discussed and with international business partnerships, it can be difficult to jump on a plane to meet in person or visit a problem on-site. When you build your partnership contract, it is important to include procedures for solving issues that include which ones require travel, which can be solved through remote communications and which are the sole responsibility of the people on-site. This can remove many of the stumbling-blocks to international trade as well as save you time and worry.

The management of international business transactions means a firm understanding of the laws, borders, and customs involved in each country as well as their international trade and banking policies. There are courses and degrees offered for global risk management to help you find the right partners, iron out problem-solving procedures, and minimize risks by starting slowly.

Kevin Gardner graduated with a BS in Computer Science and an MBA from UCLA. He works as a business consultant for InnovateBTS where he helps companies integrate technology to improve performance. He shares his knowledge and expertise not only with his clients but with his fellow bloggers and readers