6 Reasons to Take Your Online Business Global
Looking back over the last two decades of online business, there have been many paradigm-shifting events: Email, the World Wide Web, E-Commerce, and most recently, Social Media. Each has improved our ability to communicate, extended our reach, facilitated information access, improved the efficiency of commerce, and spurred innovation.
Indisputably, no previous shift in the way we have done business equals the effect of the next change on the horizon: The transformation of the global economy.
As an entrepreneur or small business person, I’m sure the last thing on your mind is expanding globally. However, I hope that the 6 reasons I catalog below will spur your thinking. The opportunity is immense. And unlike decades ago, when global business was beyond the reach of any but the largest mega-corporations, in today’s world, it is well within your potential market even on a limited budget.
SIX REASONS TO TAKE YOUR ONLINE BUSINESS GLOBAL:
1. The economic centers of gravity are changing. Over the next fourteen years, according to McKinsey & Company, dramatic shifts in global Gross Domestic Product will occur. As can be seen in the chart to the left, in 2007 nearly three quarters of GDP came from developed countries and mega-cities (in Blue). By 2025, not a long time in the life of your successful company, only a third will come from them.
The overall amount of GDP has not changed appreciably — it’s still roughly $55 trillion, but the economic centers of gravity have changed in favor of smaller cities in emerging markets (Orange and Green).
2. These new consumers will buy from you. Consumers in these emerging markets will share in the increasing wealth of their cities.
GDP per capita will also increase proportionately, and hence buying power.
Along with increased buying power, the middle class in these new markets will be growing as well. They will be buying cars and other consumer products.
3. Demographics will also change dramatically, creating new markets for certain products and services. To cite just two examples, products for children and the elderly will develop disproportionately larger markets, due to the increase in these two very profitable demographics.
If you sell diapers or certain pharmaceutical products, these emerging markets may represent a gold mine of opportunity.
There are countless other products and services that will find new and fertile sales potential in the global economy.
4. The growth of the buying middle class will be overseas. Presuming that you have a middle class market, by 2025 over half of your market will be in emerging countries.
Developing region cities will be the home to an estimated 235 million middle class households, as compared to 210 million middle class households in developed countries.
Current research indicates that in China alone, there will be 7 million more children and 80 million more elderly by 2025.
Shanghai will have twice as many older citizens as New York City.
With new housing starts in the U.S. at an all-time low, in the global economy the three cities that will experience the greatest growth in housing demand will be Beijing, Shanghai, and Tokyo. Can your business (or any business) afford to ignore these changes?
5. In purely economic terms, North American cities are losing their dominance. According to McKinsey & Company, “Over the next 15 years, the center of gravity of the urban world will move south and, even more decisively, east.”
In 2007, fully half the Global GDP came from 380 cities in developed countries, with 190 in North America alone. This is going to change. By 2025, many of the North American economic giants will be replaced by 136 new cities from the developing world, with over 100 new cities from China. If you and your business associates are unfamiliar with places like Fortaleza, Manaus, and Recife in Brazil; Huambo and Casablanca in Africa; Sharjah in the Middle East; Nagpur,Vadodara and Visakhapatnam in India; and Chengdu, Foshan and Xi’an in China, it’s time to start learning about them.
6. The Social Media Global Population represents an enormous and readily available market. Jericho Technology visitors over just the last year have originated from 103 foreign countries, in addition to the United States. Over 25% of our current visitors come from outside North America. Even that number is hard to ignore, but as the statistics above suggest, that percentage is going to increase substantially in the coming years. With over half a billion Social Media users, a large portion of whom are from overseas, and with the exponential growth we have seen in just the last year from Facebook and Twitter alone, imagine the market statistics as the next decade unfolds.
If you are wondering where your next customers are going to come from, stop. They may be a world away, but that’s only one click of your mouse.
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