A Midlands jewellery designer has increased its overseas sales by more than £30,000 after it took expert advice to have its website geared up for international markets.
Rowena Simmons, managing director of trade at Worcestershire-based Franco Florenzi, said sales to Spain, Germany and France have soared since it received match-funding from the Department for International Trade (DIT) West Midlands earlier this year. The funding helped the company translate their website and marketing materials into Spanish, German and French.
The online company, which designs accessories for both men and women, began trading in January last year and having received its first order from Spain, knew it had the potential to grow its overseas markets.
Thanks to help from the DIT experts in Worcestershire, Rowena believes the business is poised for significant growth, with the ultimate aim of reaching the Chinese and Nigerian markets.
Since the internationalised website was launched in May, Franco Florenzi’s turnover has soared by more than £30,000, with a 4% increase in sales to France, 9% to Spain, and 11% to Germany.
“Although 85% of our turnover comes from outside of the UK, language barriers meant we could only sell to English speaking countries or individuals.
“It wasn’t until we started working with the Department for International Trade in Worcester that we realised the importance of website internationalisation when trying to secure sales from non-English speaking countries.
“Over the past 16 months we have worked closely with the DIT team to improve our knowledge of exporting and to familiarise ourselves with the culture and language of different countries, which has enabled us to increase sales from Germany, France and Spain.
“DIT’s advice has also helped us to define which international markets are best suited to our products and marketing strategy. Without the team, we would not have had access to these resources.”
Christine Hamilton, interim regional director of the Department for International Trade West Midlands, said:
“Translating a website is crucial for any online business that wants to access new territories and as Rowena has experienced already, it can have a dramatic effect on turnover. Our eCommerce experts can offer superb advice for any web-based company that wants to expand its overseas sales and I’d urge anyone to contact us to see what help and support we can provide.”
The Department for International Trade’s Exporting Opportunities site has dozens of live opportunities now, with overseas buyers and stores looking for British-designed jewellery and fashion accessories.
Any business that wants to find out more about exporting should visit www.exportingisgreat.gov.uk and book an appointment with a local international trade adviser (ITA).