Avoid These Common Mistakes When Expanding Your Amazon Business Internationally

May 11, 2023



Are you prepared to take your Amazon business to new markets? Congratulations on making this wise decision! Relying solely on one marketplace leaves you vulnerable to market fluctuations and heightened competition. Conversely, expanding your reach exposes you to fresh marketplaces, a new customer base, and diversified revenue streams. Venturing into international territories is an exhilarating endeavor, but it is crucial to steer clear of common mistakes that many encounter when exploring new horizons. Here are some prevalent errors sellers make while expanding their Amazon businesses internationally, along with tips to help you avoid them.

Selecting an Expert Translator for Your Amazon Business Expansion

Finding a skilled translator is not a challenging task. Numerous translators are readily available, with a simple search on platforms like Fiverr. However, not all translators guarantee success. Some are more adept at handling legal, financial, or medical documents, rather than translating Amazon listings. If you require the translation of a vacuum cleaner instruction manual into a new language, an online translator can be suitable. However, when it comes to Amazon listings, a more complex approach is necessary.

To ensure success, seek a translator who is fluent in the target language and familiar with Amazon’s style and format. Ideally, they should also possess copywriting skills to create compelling product listings that attract customers. The ideal combination is a native speaker who is also a copywriter and understands conversion dynamics on Amazon. Read more about the localization triumvirate here.

Enhance Sales by Localizing Your Amazon Listings

The importance of finding the aforementioned triumvirate lies in the fact that you should not merely translate your listings word for word. While this approach may work for straightforward technical documents, Amazon listings require a touch of finesse. Adapting your product listings to the local language, culture, and preferences of the target market is crucial. Failure to localize your listings can lead to confusion, negative customer experiences, and lost sales.

To illustrate, consider the phrase “cat got your tongue.” English speakers understand it as a metaphor for being at a loss for words. In German, the closest equivalent is “Hast du die Sprache verloren?” which translates to “Have you lost the ability to speak?” Imagine asking your tongue-tied friend if they’ve lost the ability to speak!

Finding native speakers to translate your Amazon listing is good practice, because they can employ the metaphors and idiomatic expressions that resonate with your target market. Here’s why hiring a native translator is necessary.

Unleash the Potential of Emerging Markets for Your Amazon Business

When expanding your Amazon business internationally, it’s easy to focus on established markets while overlooking emerging ones. Many sellers in the US marketplace target the UK marketplace due to its shared language. Although the UK marketplace is robust, sellers often overlook the German marketplace, which is the second-largest Amazon marketplace after the US. Germany’s marketplace serves not only its own country but also neighboring countries that lack their own Amazon marketplace. Research and understand the potential of new markets to avoid missing out on valuable revenue streams.

Check out this blog, where we talk about the nuances of expanding to German, French, and Spanish marketplaces.

Effective Marketing Language for International Amazon Expansion

People make purchasing decisions in different ways and respond to various marketing techniques. Therefore, it is essential to recognize that different cultures have varying attitudes toward marketing language. Conduct thorough research to understand your target audience’s preferences and tailor your listings accordingly. While American customers may prefer emotive marketing language with hyperbole and superlatives, many Europeans prefer a more factual approach that allows them to make their own judgments about a product’s qualities. Addressing the wrong audience can hinder the success of your product.

We talk more about American vs. British buying habits in this blog. Make sure you don’t switch up the communications styles; what converts one culture might turn the other culture off!

Achieving International Success Through In-Depth Market Research

Thorough research is imperative before expanding your business internationally. A deep understanding of your target market is crucial for success. Conduct comprehensive market research, familiarize yourself with local regulations, and avoid costly mistakes. Different cultures have varying attitudes toward language, tone, and humor. Selecting the appropriate tone and language to effectively communicate with your target audience is paramount.

Additionally, be aware of your top competitors in each marketplace. Take inspiration from the success story of Mr. Beast, a popular YouTuber, philanthropist, and entrepreneur who has achieved remarkable success. Despite competing with well-established burger joints that have larger budgets and longer histories, Mr. Beast’s keen understanding of the market, customer preferences, areas for improvement in the competition, and his ability to differentiate himself has propelled him to success. This serves as a reminder that with the right knowledge and strategy, anyone can achieve their goals.

Read more about Mr. Beast, and what tips we can learn from him, here.

Connect with New Customers: Localize Your Website and Social Media

To truly connect with new customers in a foreign market, it’s crucial to meet them where they are. Expanding to a new country means seeking out new customers actively. Instead of expecting them to find you, proactively engage with them on their preferred online platforms and align with their interests. Many sellers make the mistake of beautifully localizing their Amazon listings but overlook their external marketing efforts.

Even if your Amazon SEO is perfectly optimized, you’re only tapping into a fraction of your potential audience. What about the customers in your new market who are unaware of your existence? This is where localizing your external marketing becomes invaluable. Having natives from the new culture handle your marketing efforts is especially beneficial, as they possess a deeper understanding of the market. Take Samsung, for example. The Korean electronics brand has experienced great success in France because their French team manages the brand’s communication. There are only a few Koreans in the French office. This seamless and fluent communication helps Samsung resonate with its French audience. Check out our Facebook post on this topic for quick info on how Samsung did it!

The Importance of Due Diligence in International Amazon Expansion

Enthusiasm is commendable when it comes to expanding your business. However, it’s important not to let excitement cloud your judgment. Thorough due diligence is essential when expanding your Amazon business internationally. Ask yourself which market you should expand to and who your target market is. Have you done your homework to ensure that your new target market is eager to buy your product? Conducting thorough market research and understanding local dynamics will help you avoid unnecessary expenses and increase your chances of success.

Due diligence is crucial before expansion. Check out this blog for thorough information on how to go about it.

Cost-Effective Localization for International Amazon Expansion

Some sellers mistakenly assume that localization is prohibitively expensive. However, they are aware that localizing product listings, websites, and social media channels increases the likelihood of success and boosts revenue. Localization often provides a higher return on investment than other aspects of business expansion. Moreover, localizing your listings is frequently more cost-effective than product photography. It is a one-time service that yields remarkable results quickly.

Curious about getting started? How about a risk-free listing analysis to see where you can improve on your localization efforts?

Boost Visibility with Targeted Keyword Research for Each Amazon Marketplace

When expanding from one Amazon marketplace to another, such as from amazon.com to amazon.co.uk, it’s crucial to conduct keyword research specific to each market. Simply copying and pasting keywords from one marketplace to another can lead to poor rankings and ineffective targeting. Different markets have unique preferences and linguistic nuances. Therefore, fresh keyword research should be conducted for each market by someone who understands the local dialect and culture. Check out Jana’s guest appearance with Nick Uresin on the Amazon Legends podcast; she touches on this topic and way more.

Unlock Your Amazon Business’s Global Potential with Successful International Expansion

In conclusion, expanding your Amazon business internationally can be a lucrative endeavor, but it requires careful planning, preparation, and avoiding common mistakes. Partnering with experts who understand the intricacies of localization and Amazon expansion can increase your chances of success and accelerate your progress. Congratulations on your decision to expand globally, and good luck with your worldwide expansion!