E-COMMERCE - and the prospect of cracking China - is no longer a domain bossed solely by the big end of town, with regional food and agri-tourism businesses firmly in Asia’s shop window and on the cusp of big bucks.
But it’s also understandable, says Regional Development Australia Central West executive director Julia Andrews, if small and medium enterprises in the country need a guiding hand to get their head around it all.
“We’ve got a lot of people in the regions who export, but when it comes to the wider e-commerce and e-commerce into China, people aren’t sure where to start,” she said.
It’s the end product of a regional value-adding exercise by RDA Central West and the DPI’s International Engagement Unit: A free resource that follows three Central West agribusinesses that have embarked on cross-border e-commerce into China.
Mortimers Wines, MSM Milling’s Auzure canola oil, and Superbee Honey are the three case studies featured, with their various challenges and victories detailed to give others an idea of what to expect.
Ms Andrews said businesses often assumed they needed to be big exporters to dip their toe into the China and e-commerce pool.
“You don’t need to sell to billions - you don’t need to take on all of China,” she said.
“You’d never approach the whole of Europe.
“There is room for niche.”
High-profile industry experts also provide advice.
Featured is Livia Wang, managing director of Access CN, a premier Chinese marketing agency in Australia. She talks about build your brand through social influencers and how to integrate “products,” “distribution” and a “marketing” plan to most effectively break into Chinese markets.
Allan Qui, managing director of digital marketing service provider Stone Drums Group, talks about the Chinese social media landscape, while Sanger’s China-Asia sales manager Tim Sullivan gives insights from the Bindaree Beef experience.
Representatives from Austrade, TradeStart and the DPI International Engagement Unit also provided insights and answered questions.
The new toolkit has been featured at e-commerce Regional Businesses Masterclasses in the Central West, which could also be heading to other regions.