Expanding your business to a new market is no easy feat. In fact, according to the Harvard Business Review, it takes companies 10 years to reach a modest +1% and only 40% of companies turn in more than 3% return on their assets.
Therefore minimizing cost investment and risk is imperative to achieving a successful venture into a new market. One major obstacle that can impede a swift, cost effective, and compliant market move is your billing platform.
Outdated billing platforms may lack the capability to:
- Sell through partner entities
- Customize product catalogs
- Localize the invoice language and currency
- Apply the relevant taxes and manage reporting
- Accept all methods of payment
- Meet data privacy and security compliance requirements
Therefore, let’s delve into how a modern billing platform with the latest capabilities can help you to efficiently and rapidly expand to new markets.
1. Leverage Centralized Operations While Empowering Partner Entities
When businesses first strategically assess their move to a new market, it is vital to analyze what products, services, core capabilities, and processes in the central operations can be leveraged in another market.
Hence, it’s crucial to have the systems in place that can easily empower partner entities in another geographic region to lean on this existing IP, assets and know-how.
Through adopting a modern channel-friendly billing system, businesses don’t necessarily need to reinvent the wheel upon market entry. They can simply set up their partner entities on a channel partner portal, reveal a localized version of their existing product and services catalog, empower that entity to bill-on-behalf-of the head operations, and manage any party settlements or commissions in real time.
2. Customize Product Catalogs For The Local Market
As the entity grows and begins to better understand the market, there may be innovation opportunities identified to either cross-sell other adjacent products or services, up-sell through customized features, or even create new bundles to entice customers to expand their repertoire.
As a result, it is essential that this partner entity has the autonomy to customize and expand on the existing product catalog, in order to service their market’s unique needs.
This is where modern billing platforms can be powerful, as they provide the functionality for these partner entities to add products and services and create new bundled offerings without disruption the master entities setup. Should the master entity be receiving a component of the revenue from the sale of these customized offerings, the partner entity can easily establish the rules of multi-party settlement to ensure that the revenue is hitting the top-line.
3. Ensure Nothing Is Lost In Translation
When entering a new market, businesses should be able to translate invoices into new currencies and languages through a simple setting change. Furthermore, in markets where there are dual languages, businesses should have the power to segment their contacts and translate invoices to different currencies and languages as per the customer’s settings and preferences.
Therefore, by leveraging a modern billing platform, this is made possible. Most of these platforms have multilingual support where invoices can be translated into 40+ languages. Moreover, businesses can personalize the customer journey by ensuring communication and invoices are tailored to the customer’s preferred language.
Furthermore, the modern billing platform can intelligently detect the customer’s region and apply the relevant invoice display currency based on their preferences without human intervention.
4. Achieve Taxation Compliance and Manage Reporting
Depending on the product or service category, taxation compliance and reporting can be a small nightmare even in one region alone. This complexity is then magnified as soon as you enter new overseas markets.
In addition, engaging taxation professionals in those new markets can often be costly and their advice can be a minefield to navigate, let alone, to stay on top of from year-to-year.
As a result, modern billing platforms have recognized this challenge and have native integrations available with expert taxation platforms such as SureTax, Avalara, and CSI Compliance Solutions.
Through leveraging these advanced taxation platforms, the relevant tax codes and rates are automatically applied to the invoice, according to product or service type and the selling region. There’s no need for manual intervention and to cross-check the current tax rates, as these platforms are constantly updating their tax codes and rates in real time.
In addition, these platforms can also manage the tedious end of taxation reporting to ensure the business entity is fully compliant in that new market.
5. Remain Flexible To Preferred Payment Methods
Customer purchasing behavior can be drastically different across markets. As part of this, their preferred payment methods can vary and cause a small nightmare for businesses who are trying to streamline their revenue operations.
Thus, it is important that a business has a modern billing platform that enables them to easily switch between payment methods to offer everything from online payments such as credit card, wire transfers, ACH transactions, wallets, as well as offline check payments.
6. Keep Compliance and Privacy In Check
There’s no doubt that there is growing global concern over data privacy and ensuring that technology platforms are doing their part to maintain compliances and standards to ensure their databases and data sharing processes are water tight.
Furthermore, each country has their own compliance and data privacy standards which businesses need to adhere to in order to operate successfully and risk free.
With a modern billing platform, navigating this space is made easy as these platforms have done the leg work in ensuring compliances (e.g. GDPR, PCI), authentication processes (usernames, passwords, encryptions), and keys (SSH keys) are in place.
At the end of the day, in the complex game of market expansion, businesses can be better equipped to minimize cost investment and risk, while maximizing efficiency and the ultimate profit line.
Explore a modern billing platform like OneBill that can enable your business to manage partner entities, customize product catalogs, localize invoice language and currency, stay tax compliant, easily switch to accepting different payment methods, and achieve data privacy and security compliance. Take a tour of the OneBill platform today.