Buying and selling aesthetic lasers internationally comes with its challenges, but it can also come with many benefits. Without the proper knowledge of packaging, shipping, customs, currency exchange, taxes, and cultural practices in foreign markets, the entire enterprise can feel overwhelming.
THE BENEFITS OF INTERNATIONAL PROCUREMENT
People want to work with you and if your business is based in the United States, other countries are likely very interested in selling their products to you. This is due to the strength of the American dollar and current exchange rates. Businesses in other countries could make up to an additional 50% more just by selling to the United States.
International procurement of a laser could increase credibility. As a company, you are always trying to broaden your reach and have more clients and partners throughout the world. Buying and selling products internationally gives a company the chance to be a global leader, which opens many doors for your business.
It can also expand your sales pipeline. Medical equipment is bought and sold all over the world – why limit yourself to just one set of potential customers? Expand your reach and create a worldwide reputation for being the best in your field.
THE PITFALL OF INTERNATIONAL PROCUREMENT
While it is a pleasure to do business – most of the time – with great customers in countries all over South East Asia, Eastern Europe, Western Europe, and others, there are those looking to make a quick buck. These scammers will try to sell knock-off lasers at a price that is, in fact, too good to be true. These are not FDA-approved, even if they claim to be, are not serviceable, can break, can ultimately lead to client injury, and can completely malfunction after one use. It’s important to have a keen eye to spot these and to try to stick to a manufacturer that is known and trusted.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR
If you choose to do business overseas, it’s important to partner with a company that has the necessary experience and can guide you. There are three main benefits of partnering with an expert, if you’re interested in buying or selling a laser or laser parts internationally.
Established Shipping Procedures and Policies: Knowing how to package and protect lasers and their parts from damage through what could be a tough shipping process is key. If a laser breaks en route, many more challenges present themselves to both the seller and the buyer. Making sure all parts are accounted for and wrapped properly will save major issues in unboxing.
Insurance and Customs Processes: Insurance and custom forms are also key in ensuring the equipment gets to its destination. Without understanding these forms, the laser might get held up for days, weeks, or even months.
Payment Methods to Keep Your Business Safe: Ask if the dealer, buyer, or seller is willing to work with an escrow service. If they are not, this is a huge red flag. In the United States, we know the term from home ownership, but it is becoming a more prevalent method of performing online transactions. The safety, security, and simplicity allows parties on both end to feel comfortable that the transaction will go smoothly.
If you’re looking to expand your business internationally, consider partnering with a global expert. Companies with experience in that area have processes in place, are knowledgeable about customs policies in all different countries and have established payment methods to keep your business safe. Working with companies globally can be difficult, but if you do it right and partner with professionals, your business is bound to be successful.
Eric Graham, vice president of sales at Sentient Lasers, joined Sentient Lasers in 2011 as sales director and has been instrumental in increasing sales year over year and implementing an effective performance tracking system and new sales processes. He led the charge increasing sales in 2017 by 97.3% from the previous year. Graham has over 20 years of business experience and, prior to joining Sentient Lasers, served as a business performance analyst at Insperity, a publicly traded human resources company, where he led the pack in client retention and exceeding quotas, maintaining a 100% client retention rate. Prior to that, he was one of the youngest heads of account management in advertising and marketing on Madison Avenue in New York City, working for such marquee shops as BBDO and Angotti Thomas Hedge before leaving to help start Flashpoint Advertising.