How To Know the Job of an Import-Export Agent

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The import and export of goods is a great way of looking for more business opportunities and taking part in international trade especially since companies engaging in business on an international scale grow much faster. There are more markets to choose from. Aside from this, you could also choose when to market particular products, matching the buying trends of a particular group or market.

Import-export agents have the potential to earn a lot from the transactions that they facilitate. Some independent import-export agents even boast of running the business with a very low overhead cost. Aside from this, the work of being an import-export agent requires little financial investment. A good head for organizing matters, an ability to sell with diplomacy and tact and the right amount of determination are the only traits an import-export agent needs to be able to handle the type of work that this job entails. He searches for business opportunities, looking for contacts in trade directories.

An import-export agent makes it easier for manufacturers and companies to reach a worldwide market. He matches manufacturers of local products and domestic goods that want to find an international market for their products. The agent looks for these markets, makes a real, solid connection and brokers a business relationship with both the local manufacturers and the foreign companies.

The commission that an import-export agent receives generally hovers around 10% of the transaction. Since there is an unlimited market with hundreds and thousands of manufacturers wanting to break into the international market, there should also be unlimited chances to make a good deal and earn a steady profit from working as an import-export agent. The United States market is one that is highly favored by foreign local manufacturers of cars, clocks, radios, housewares, garments or anything that can be easily exported.

For a good business system, an import-export agent should have a telephone in his office. He should have stable filing system, have business cards on hand, set-up a machine that will answer all phone calls and have a classy letterhead. As part of establishing contacts with various companies, having a professional-looking, embossed letterhead is going to be a plus.

One of the important things an import-export agent needs to do is to make sure that he keeps himself abreast of trends, laws, and any policy regarding trade, business and manufacturing in different countries. Having a feel for the market will make it easier to understand  his clients.

Matching the foreign markets and manufacturers with the U.S. manufacturers and companies with each other is a crucial part of the work of an import-export agent. He contacts foreign distributors that will purchase the goods. He gets a signed contract with an American manufacturer from which you will get this order. The foreign distributor may make arrangements regarding shipping or freight forwarding and the agent need not worry anymore about these matters. If this is not the case, the extra cost of getting the merchandise is incorporated together with his commission into the price of the goods. These terms are agreed upon before any exchange takes place.

An import-export agent has the potential to create high profit. Hard work and strong knowledge of the business is what will ensure that he will continue to succeed in this business.


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