If your company has been growing for some time or growth has started to slow down, you may be looking for new opportunities. One of those could be expanding your business into Canada.
Why would a company want to expand?
There are many good reasons. Reaching a new market is prime among them. Growing your customer base, improving profits, and even taking on the challenge of a new market may be other reasons to consider.
International expansion can be difficult, though, which might be holding you back. With these six simple steps to expand your business, profits will be booming on both sides of the border in no time.
1. Do Market Research before You Expand Your Business
The first item on your list should be to undertake market research. If you’re planning to expand to Canada, take a look at the existing market for your products or services. Are there many competitors? If so, what do you offer that will help you stand out?
If there aren’t many competitors, ask yourself why. Is this an underserved market or an unrecognized need? Other factors, such as market regulation, could play a role.
2. Consult with the Experts on Legal Matters
The next step in expanding your business to Canada is to make sure you understand the legal framework. Will you need to structure your business as a branch or as a subsidiary? Which offers you the most tax efficiency?
You’ll also want to ask questions about employment law and environmental law. How will you go about hiring employees? What are your options for payroll?
It’s best to consult with the experts on these matters. They can help you understand the steps you’ll need to take, as well as provide insight on how to navigate the Canadian market.
3. Consider Logistics
One of the most important steps you can take as you expand your business into Canada is to give some thought to logistics. How will you get products to your customers? Do you need to purchase real estate or hire employees?
You’ll also need to consider banking logistics. How will you pay the vendors you work with or the employees you hire? This consideration goes beyond policies, but to the infrastructure you'll need.
If you work with a professional employer organization (PEO), you may be able to leverage their infrastructure to solve some of these issues.
4. Hire Your First Employee
You’ll need to file some paperwork beforehand, but your next step should be to locate the right talent.
Finding the right employees can be difficult enough in your home market, but finding them in an international market could be a struggle.
Ask your PEO for their expert insights on the labour market in Canada. They may be able to tell you about the market and challenges, as well as hiring regulations you’ll want to pay attention to.
5. Adjust Your Marketing Strategy
Think back to the market research you conducted in an earlier step. Canadians have different expectations, so what worked well in the US or even another country might not translate to the Canadian context.
Adjust your marketing accordingly. A campaign that addresses the concerns and needs of your Canadian customers will be much more successful.
6. Monitor Performance
Once you’ve moved across the border and opened your doors to the Canadian market, it’s important to keep tabs on how you’re performing. Are you complying with Canadian laws? Are your people productive? Are your marketing messages resonating with the Canadian populace?
A PEO can help you keep tabs on some of these performance metrics. If you haven’t considered partnering with one yet, you should get in touch with us today. We can help you expand your business with ease.