Export Navigator client, Gathering Place Trading, located on Vancouver Island North.

For any business owner, stability is key. However, there are many factors that can destabilize a business. As the past year and more of the pandemic has shown, businesses need to adapt to unforeseen circumstances. Have you considered how new competition could disrupt your traditional customer base? What if a major purchaser moves out of your region? These are just a few of the compelling cases for diversifying your market. 

Exporting is essential for long-term revenue and business growth. You’ll become less reliant on your local market, discover new business opportunities, and become eligible for more provincial and federal government grants. Even exporting out of B.C. to our next-door neighbour Alberta is a great feat as a small business. Doing so not only expands your market, but also provides an opportunity to assess your business’s capabilities for exporting at a smaller scale. 

To learn more, Export Navigator’s free e-course, Export Essentials, is highly recommended for beginners. The course helps small business owners gain a deeper understanding of what exporting entails. Export Essentials covers the most basic and important exporting concepts in one short, self-directed course. 

Benefits of exporting from B.C. 

Businesses in B.C. have several strategic advantages that make exporting more accessible. For instance, it shares a land border with the world’s largest consumer market and B.C.’s largest trading partner, the United States. You don’t have to look far to export and the U.S. is the perfect example of that. It’s often one of the easier target markets for first time exporters.

There are a few reasons why you should start exporting to the U.S. before dipping into other overseas markets. As outlined by Export Development Canada, the three factors to consider are familiarity, proximity, and size and variety. 

    • Familiarity: The U.S. contains markets most similar to our own here in Canada, has fewer cultural barriers, and does business in the same language. 
    • Size and variety: The U.S. market is not only close in proximity, but also contains various sub-markets that vary from state to state. Therefore, you have a huge range of options for diversifying your market in the U.S. 

Exporting to Asia

For businesses that are capable of further expansion around the globe, B.C. also contains several world-class international ports. This makes exporting to Asia more feasible, as B.C. boasts the shortest sea route between North America and Asia. Asia’s closest ports of entry to the west coast of North America are in B.C., allowing goods to get there faster. 

In addition to the geographical advantage, Asia is another coveted market for exporters due to its rapidly rising middle class. This creates higher demand for goods and services. In turn, it also means plenty of exporting opportunities for small businesses everywhere. B.C. already has strong cultural connections and a prominent presence in Asia, establishing our province as a reputable business location. 

Learn more

Still have questions about exporting? Talk with an export advisor and learn more about how to export today. Export Navigator is unique because it is the only program in B.C. that offers expert guidance through every step of the way. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to get tailored advice and information for your business!

You can also learn more about exporting in B.C. through signing up for the Export Navigator newsletter, which will keep you updated on local exporting events and useful resources.