Homework at your end
The next thing you should do after you've located the
binoculars or telescopes to import is to set up your
own business if you don't have one, think over whom
you will sell the imports to, and how.
3.1 Set up an import business
3.2 Conduct market research
Set up an import business
For those of you who are new in import business, you
must set up your import business to import the binocular
and telescopes from us. You can set up your business
in three ways:
1) as a sole proprietorship where you are solely responsible
for all activities of your venture.
2) forming a partnership, if you have a business partner.
3) forming a corporation which is a bit complicated and
probably not necessary in the beginning for those who
start the import business from scratch.
In most cases, in most countries, you will be required
to have a business license and perhaps pay sales tax.
See your local government agencies for complete information
on license requirements in your area. Check with the
state chamber of commerce, local trade associations
and professional groups for information on licenses
and state registration.
It can be a critical step to select a bank that has
some import/export experience. And a computer with access
to internet and a fax machine are indispensable for
your import business.
Conduct market research
We've seen the customers who become successful, and
we've seen the customers whose business fail to survive.
After having reviewed all the cases, we've found that
there is no uniform success formula, and there is no
fixed pattern for "losers". But, in most cases,
we find that how they market the binoculars and telescopes
makes the difference.
Import business, for the most part, is marketing intensive.
Marketing your imports will require a lot of effort
and planning on your part. While there are a lot of
textbooks and articles from which you can learn on this
topic, three aspects of marketing, speaking from our
customers' success stories, are probably somewhat more
important: know your customers, know your competitors
and know yourself, and know how-to on pricing.
Know your customers - identifying the target market
Do you plan to sell to individuals, or to wholesale
and retail companies, or by using sales agents? If plan
to sell to individuals, what is your target market,
amateur astronomers, bird watchers, hunters, sports
fans or opera lovers?
You can sell to all. But, please keep in mind that today's
binoculars and telescopes market is hyper-competitive.
Usually, if you sell to all, you've to have enough capital
to purchase more complete lines of binoculars for different
uses, order larger quantity on each model of binoculars
to lower down the cost and so to make the prices competitive,
and to sell the large stock of binoculars and telescopes,
you've to have a bigger budget for advertising. And
you'll face up with much more competitions from more
Or you can focus upon a niche market if you don't think
you can afford to sell to all. You'll find that today's
binoculars and telescopes market, on the other hand,
still has many different customer segments, each having
different needs, wants, and characteristics, that need
to be approached with a good or service designed to
excel in meeting these needs, wants, and interests.
Know who your target audience is, that is your perfect
customer, you can begin to write your sales copy with
a direct focus on their specific wants and needs, and
you can focus your advertising campaigns in areas that
you know they'll most likely be. You are far better
off targeting a well-defined, niche market and dominating
it - focusing on those sales that come easily than trying
to sell your product to everyone and their pets.
To get a clear picture of exactly who your target market
is, you may need to conduct a market survey. Or if you
have already a lot of knowledge about the product and
its market, just follow your intuition, and TRY - if
failed, refocus, and retry. Persistence is a crucial
know your competitors and know yourself
As the great ancient strategist Sunwu says, know the
enemy and know yourself, and you can fight a hundred
battles with no danger of defeat.
Find out your competitors. Check out your competitors'
web sites and stores. Note down their pricing, products
and customer service. Study their strength and weakness.
Compare every items to yours, then do better, and excel!
Position your goods or service in an unique or different
fashion. Strives to be better than your competitors
at something that customers value. The key concept is
to be special at something that is important to the
Know how-to on pricing
Firstly, keep in mind that one of YOUR strength is,
thanks to the internet, you can now import binoculars
and telescopes directly from us. And backed up by us,
you can easily enjoy considerable markup and still sell
your products at reduced prices even you start with
a smaller order quantity. Sometimes, one of the critical
ways to survive is on price competition. So, be smart
on pricing the binoculars. There are some common pricing
techniques as follows:
， evaluating product features and customer benefits
， marking up your cost
， undercutting competitors' prices
， asking key customers
， getting feedback from salespeople
， considering typical customers' "disposable income"
Suppose your net profit margin is 10%. If you could
increase the price of your product by 10% without losing
unit-sales, you would double your net profit margin
to 20%. A 10% increase in price would increase your
profits by 100%. Or let's say that you decrease the
price of your product from $209 to $169. If that doubles
sales, wouldn't that more than make up for slightly
You've to figure out by yourself what is the prefect
price, a perfect price that makes your binoculars and
telescopes competitive and maximize your profit at the
You'll need the help of a freight forwarder or customs
broker when you make up the total price quotation to
the distributor. Not only do you include the CIF (or
CNF) price and your commission-usually added together,
but you need to include dock and cartage fees, the forwarders
fees duty charges, packing charges, or other costs.
Be especially careful when you prepare this quotation.
It certainly isn't professional to come back to the
distributor with a higher quote including fees you forgot.