#37: How To Export And Sell Products Online In China with Frank Lavin from Export Now

Frank Lavin, former U.S. Ambassador to Singapore and Undersecretary of Commerce for International Trade joins us this week to discuss how he helps U.S. companies export and sell their products online in China. Export Now offers a turn-key solution for end-to-end logistics, customs management, translation, payments, last-mile delivery, and online advertising in the Chinese E-Commerce market.

Topics Discussed:

  • 04:00 – How Export Now works and the problems they solve
  • 05:30 – E-Commerce platforms of Taobao and T-Mall
  • 07:30 – Size of the Chinese E-Commerce market
  • 10:30 – Customer and merchant protection on T-Mall
  • 12:30 – Solving the problem of genuine and knockoff products online
  • 15:00 – The sweet spot of product segments and pricing
  • 17:00 – Minimum volume threshold to get traction online in China
  • 18:00 – Online advertising campaigns in China
  • 19:00 – Product pricing and bestsellers online in China
  • 23:00 – Differences in consumer purchasing habits
  • 24:00 – Migration to your own team on the ground in China
  • 28:00 – Cost and benefit analysis of getting into China
  • 30:00 – Shipping policies and consumer expectations in China
  • 31:30 – VAT and taxation in China
  • 34:00 – E-Commerce as a stepping stone to offline distribution and retail
  • 35:00 – Micro-testing and getting feedback from the Chinese market
  • 38:00 – Using different service providers in conjunction with Export Now
  • 40:30 – Demographics and the state of E-Commerce in the Chinese market


Mentions in the Episode:

Episode Length: 47:03


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  1. I really liked this podcast. I found it to be insightful and useful. I consult with a company who sells products in Vietnam and the United States that I shared this information with. Thanks for doing such great podcasts, Terry, and thanks Frank for doing this podcast.

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