best practices to import products and gain more profit

The COVID-19 pandemic has had an everlasting impact on numerous industries worldwide. Businesses have faced increased scrutiny with carrying out their operations, especially the ones that involve international trade. Importers must take concrete steps to ensure their company can import products.

Moving goods properly have been overlooked by businesses in the past. However, as problems have risen, companies must adopt relevant practices for importing products and carrying out their operations.

The operations involved in products to import has become a source of confusion for numerous stakeholders involved, which results in further delays from the international borders. In addition, you will waste your revenue, time, and effort if you do not know how to import products in these difficult times.

Practices to Import Products

1) Do Your Research Before Starting

It is always a good habit to do thorough research before starting a new business, such as beginning to import or sell imported products alongside local goods. The best way to do research is to conduct a SWOT analysis, which will give you an idea about your strengths, weaknesses, and competition in the industry.

You can analyze your competition correctly if you see other people importing products in the same industry. Moreover, you can look into your competitors' pricing strategy and see if you can make a good profit margin by offering lower prices than them.

2) Understand Hold-up Policies

Sometimes, people leave their containers at the airport longer than the allotted time. During this period, ports or railway stations charge a fee for the containers left on the site.

The fee depends on the size of the container and can vary every day. In any way, demurrage charges can be extremely high. Therefore, businesses need to understand the costs and when they will be imposed.

The presence of Google has made it easy for individuals to determine the demurrage fees. In addition, these fees are often displayed on government websites.

The demurrage charges are imposed by the ports and the railways so that the containers are used efficiently. These charges also encourage the importers to remove their goods within a reasonable time. To keep profit margins high, businesses must immediately remove their containers.

3) Understand Lockdown Policies

As we go through the COVID-19 pandemic, the traveling restrictions and lockdown policies keep changing in different parts of the world. Moreover, the change in lockdown policies is usually unpredictable, even for the residents of their respective countries. Hence, when you embark on international trade, it is crucial to be updated on these regulations.

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When you prepare everything, have your customers lined up, and invest your money, the last thing you want is to see your imported products get stuck. The lockdown policies suddenly get imposed in a country you import products from.

4) Ensure You are Working With the Right People

Importing products is not a one-person job. Instead, it is a team effort because even when one person lags, the whole process slows down, and the import may not be successful.

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When they import products, businesses must get an import clearance from the clearance agent. For a successful import, a company should hire an experienced clearance agent. After getting the support, the business must have a commercial team to prepare the necessary documents, such as a commercial invoice.

5) Review Your Import Data Properly

Reviewing your import data to avoid missing out on any chain opportunities when you import products is essential. As a business owner, you last want to see your store run out of stock.

Regularly checking your import data can also identify ways of reducing import duties. For example, you may consider countries with favorable free-trade agreements.

You may also need to watch the transportation modes, ensuring you fulfill all the transportation requirements. You can also identify ways to reduce your supply chain costs during this process.

6) No Banned Goods

When you import products from a different country, it is easy to account for goods banned in either country. For example, you can import wine in the United States or the UK, but not in Pakistan or other Muslim countries. Some banned goods you can't import in the UK are as follows:

  • Controlled drugs
  • Ammunition
  • Sprays
  • Endangered animals.

If a business wants to import products successfully, it must ensure the products to import are not banned. In some instances, organizations can get a license or permission to allow the import of a banned substance into a country.

7) Work With a Customs Broker

If you work with a customs broker for non-restricted imported products, you can build an effective entry process through Electronic Data Interchange feeds. However, if you try to manage all the information that you get from your vendors, it can become a daunting task. Hence, it would be best if you went with a customs broker to expedite your data processing and ensure data accuracy.

When you use a broker to import products, you must provide them with a database of imported products. The following information should be associated with your products:

  • Its part or item number
  • Its detailed description
  • Its classification number

Your customs broker will use all the information to develop appropriate classification declarations for shipping and importing products.

8) Check Out the Packaging Rules

In many countries, products must be packaged in a certain way so you can import them successfully. In addition, the relevant packaging techniques prevent the goods from being damaged.

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Your imported products may pass through extreme weather and be subject to harsh loading conditions. Therefore, it is essential to pack them according to the requirements to prevent damage.

When a business imports products, it should remain updated on the packaging requirements and policies of the countries they are importing from.

9) Be Aware of the Route

The routes between two countries are pretty straightforward (especially when neighboring countries). However, in some instances, the indirect routes can result in a risk of delay in delivery. Therefore, businesses need to research their potential path and determine whether there can be an expected delay.

After identifying your route and the possibility of a delay, the company will have the authority to cancel the shipment or take a different path. This approach can reduce uncertainty in your import business.

When a shipment is moving from one country to another, there is a chance that it will pass through other countries along the way. In some instances, those countries may require a check even if the goods are not meant for them.

10) Conduct a Compliance Assessment

To minimize potential risk, you can conduct a compliance assessment of your imported products. When you import products, your priority should be the exact locations you do this assessment for. The problem is that it can cost you a lot of money if you fail to abide by CBP and trigger an inspection of your firm's shipment.

11) Custom-Trade Partnership

When you import products, joining an anti-terrorism custom-trade partnership can be ideal. This partnership will ensure that your company is categorized as a low-class entity for importing products. Furthermore, it will speed up the delivery of your shipments in the market.

Build a Professional Business Website on Strikingly

Whether selling local goods or importing products, you need a fully-functional business website to support your products and services. Strikingly has made it easy for entrepreneurs worldwide to build a website these days. If you don't own a business website yet, sign up for a free account on Strikingly today. After your registration, you will gain access to our compilation of responsive website templates. Make sure you choose one that suits your business ideas and build an appealing website design.

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You can add all the basic information on your website using the drag-and-drop feature. You can also add quality photos and videos to support your business plans. Without programming or coding skills, your website will be up and running within a couple of hours. Whether you aim to import products or sell local goods, you will be able to attract larger audiences.

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Strikingly has users worldwide operating in different industries who have established a solid online presence for their brand. They have built an attractive landing page that immediately catches their audience's attention.

If you are building your business website for the first time, you will likely be confused one way or the other. However, you can resolve your problems by looking over at your competitors' websites and monitoring the steps they have taken to make their websites a success.


The number of import businesses has increased in the past few years, and rightly so. When executed correctly, selling imported products can be a very lucrative option. Although many people choose to import products, very few make their import business an undisputed success because many companies cannot import successfully. Companies must carry out the process and execute it carefully when importing goods.

Now that you understand how to import products, you must put your plans into perspective and build an exquisite business website on Strikingly. The easy-to-use features and website editor mean you don't need to invest heavily in experienced developers to make your website. Contact our Happiness Officers today if you have questions regarding our tools and features. Strikingly wishes you the best of luck with your import business plans.