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Prepare to Enter Your Market

Now that you’ve chosen your target market(s), your plan needs to address specific considerations for that market.

  • Do you need to tailor your product or service to specific consumer preferences, industry standards, or regulatory environment of that market, for instance?
  • What steps do you need to take to actually export from the United States?
  • Are there certain risks/challenges associated with doing business in your target markets for which you can prepare?

This section will help you think through what it takes to actually make a sale to your target market and to prepare accordingly.

In this section, you will:

  • Create an action plan to address the pros and cons you generated from the last section
  • Determine product modifications based on consumer preferences, market environment, trade barriers, etc.
  • Understand regulations and licenses that apply to your products

Tools & Resources

  • Consider how you might have to adapt your products/services for the target market. Leverage Market Research to learn about the target market’s industry standards, consumer preferences, etc.
  • Familiarize yourself with the Regulations and Licenses that may apply to your product(s). Most export transactions do not require specific approval in the form of licenses from the U.S. Government. Regulations regarding all exports must be followed.
  • Understand Tariff and Import Fees. It is very important to consider the effects of tariffs, port handling fees and other miscellaneous customs charges when determining your product's final cost.
  • Determine your Tariffs and Import Fees. These are duties (or taxes) applied to goods transported from one country to another, or on imported products. Tariffs raise the prices of imported goods, thus making them less competitive within the market of the importing country. Before you export to any country you need to determine what the tariff rate is on your product(s).
  • Think about Non-tariff Trade Barriers , which are laws or regulations that a country enacts to protect domestic industries against foreign competition. Such non-tariff barriers may include subsidies for domestic goods, import quotas, regulations on import quality, and other Foreign Standards and Certification Information.
  • Consider whether or not Intellectual Property Rights violations are a likely risk in your target market(s).


  • What are the relevant standards issues your company faces in the target market(s)?
  • Are there other trade barriers your product or service faces in your target market(s)?
  • What are the adjustments you might have to make to your product or service prior to entering your target market(s)?
  • Can you address all of these issues in your plan?

Stuck? Speak with a trade specialist at 800-USA-TRADE.

Go! Find additional information and resources to refine your plan. Proceed to the next section, Sell To Your Market.