Welcome to the fifth extract in my series from my book ‘Grow Fast, Grow Global: 6 steps to unstoppable international growth in the digital age’. Here’s an extract from chapter one talking about the massive opportunity digital offers, alongside increased competition.
The shift online is from West to East
The world of business is changing dramatically, with there being a shift online from West to East. If you take a look at the top 20 most visited websites in the world today (according to Alexa’s top site rankings) you’ll see companies that are recognised global names, including google.com, youtube.com, facebook.com, wikipedia.org, yahoo.com, amazon.com, twitter.com and instagram.com. But have you heard of any of the following names: baidu.com, google.co.in, qq.com, taobao.com, tmall.com, google. co.jp, vk.com and jd.com and weibo.com?
These are household names in Asia and some of the most popular websites in the world. Baidu is the largest Chinese language search engine, while QQ is a hugely popular chat website. Taobao, Tmall and JD are huge online stores (the Chinese equivalent to eBay and Amazon) with hundreds of millions of customers. You’ve also got Indian and Japanese versions of Google appearing in this list, as well as the Russian social media network VKontakte. These are internet names that will be known in every household of the world in the future. But this is not a one-way street – competitors from other countries like China are already selling to your customers on Amazon in your country and targeting them with Google AdWords.
“This is not just about brands from all over the world selling things to China, and it’s also about Chinese companies selling their products to consumers all over the world.”
Mike Evans, Alibaba president, interview with Bloomberg
What does this mean for your business?
As the big technology players of the East spread their wings and expand globally, your business will find more digital tools at your disposal to reach customers all around the world. Searching on Baidu and listing on Tmall will become normal for you in the next few years. However, despite this massive opportunity, you will be faced with more competition from other businesses around the world, who you’ll find playing in your backyard. So you need to get ahead of the curve now, so that you can compete with world class companies, wherever they may be in the world, and overtake your competitors at home.
It is a race you have to choose to run.
If you can’t wait and want to get your copy of Grow Fast, Grow Global to read at the weekend as paperback or Kindle, then buy online now.
To see more extracts in this series click here.