“Your first 50 right steps to enter the Russian food market”.
Step #2 – “Look at you products and website by the eyes of a Russian”
If you are going to enter the Russian food market, look at your products and website by the eyes of a Russian. Even if you have been in business for many years, developed great food products and a great website, you might need to make some changes. In Russia, people have a different mentality and a different language, so what suits the whole world will not necessarily work in Russia.
The key things you need to doublecheck are:
1. the taste of your products,
2. the name of your food product,
3. its packaging,
4. your website.
Taste. Name. Packaging.
From the very beginning you need to decide if you are going to customize or if you are going to develop your brand in Russia in the same way you do in your own country. If the Russian market is just one more market to get extra sales and additional profit, then do not change anything. Put all your financial resources into the development and promotion of your existing brand and look for buyers who will appreciate the advantages of your existing product.
However, if you plan to win a pretty good share of the Russian food market and get stable returns on your investments, I recommend that you do the following:
– Analyze your future competitors in Russia.
– Study and compare all products that are similar to your products (both Russian and imported).
– Analyze how the name of your brand and the name of your products are perceived in the Russian language.
– Conduct tastings of your product, preferably among people of different ages and social groups. Get feedback and recommendations.
– Summarize all the collected information and modify your food product for the Russian market.
As a result, when you start developing your sales, your product will be more interesting to potential buyers. So, you will find reliable partners more quickly than in case of trying to sell a product which no one understands.
If you can avoid adapting your product, it is an absolute must to have a Russian part of your website. At the moment I have food business contacts in more than 240 countries of the world, and I have seen hundreds of websites developed by companies around the world. Some of them were convenient to read and study, but others were a dreadful pain and I had to close them.
For example, websites of Arab countries are very difficult for the perception of a Russian person. The same situation is with websites from Korea. I was surprised to realize that African countries websites seem user-friendly from a Russian person’s point of view.
Besides this usability features, the main and the most important thing is that your website MUST have is a translation into the Russian language. Moreover, your website must have a “history” of your product and an explanation why it is better than others.
Let me give you an example from my practice. A company from Vietnam which produces biscuits and cookies requested my services some time ago. They supply their products to an airline of their country and export to 30 countries of the world, but these arguments were not enough for a potential buyer in Russia. I could not find any basis information about their products on their website. In what ways are their products better than the others? Why does a buyer have to choose them? Why will their products be interesting for potential customers in Russia?
These are the most common and basic principles of customizing your food product and website for Russia. The same rules apply to any CIS country because we are all from the USSR, and we have one language, similar habits and customs.
Business Adviser on Russian Food Market
Step № 3 – “Do not offer commission!”
Step № 4 – “Learn and research about your future competitors”
Step № 5 – “Assess potential obstacles”
Step № 6 – “The most critical MUST-DO: localize and translate your food business into the Russian language”
Step № 7 – “This is a step for business women and about women”
Step № 8 – “Research local preferences”
Step № 9 – “Do everything only according to the law”
Step № 10 – “Corruption and crime”
Step № 11 – “Russian mentality. Do not even try to understand”
Step № 12 – “We are looking for a food distributor in Russia! Just one exclusive distributor!”
Step № 13 – “Who is your customer in Russia? Can you describe in details?”
Step № 14 – “Why you need to have a website in the Russian language if you want to work with Russia”
Step № 15 – “Learn 3 main Russian food traditions”
Step № 16 – “Taxes and duties in Russia”
Step № 17 – “Where to find good employees in Russia?”
Step № 18 – “Do you think Moscow is the best location for business? Not always”
Step № 19 – “Always collect all the information about your Russian partners”
Step № 20 – “Major religions in Russia. What for? Of course, for business”.
Step № 21 – “GMO food, organic food and food additives”
Step № 22 – “Participation in specialized food exhibitions in Russia”
Step № 23 – “How to properly prepare for food exhibition in Russia?”
Step № 24 – “Who are your potential clients in Russia?”
Step № 25 – “What should you do after a food exhibition in Russia?”
Step № 26 – “Russian social networks”
Step № 27 – “Do you want to have a Russian business partner? Spoiler – No!”
Step № 28 – “Before entering the Russian food market, you MUST have a business plan and a backup plan”
Step № 29 – “Forget about these three phrases. Part 1 – Give us references on your work”
Step № 30 – “Forget about these three phrases. Part 2 – Advance payment and a letter of credit”
Step № 31 – “How to start your food business in Russia? I recommend business travel”
Step № 32 – “Opening a Russian legal entity (LLC and JSC)”
Step № 33 – “Open a joint venture or buy a stake in a Russian business”
Step № 34 – “Opening a branch or a representative office of your company in Russia”
Step № 35 – “Sport in Russia. What for? For food business of course”
Step № 36 – “Advertising food in Russia. The main things you need to know”
Step № 37 – “CIS and the Eurasian Customs Union. What for? To enter the Russian food market”
Step № 38 – “Vegetarianism and food products for vegetarians in Russia”
Step № 39 – “Premium food products market in Russia. Know its peculiarities and do not make mistakes”
Step № 40 – “Documents required to trade food in in Russia”
Step № 41 – “Are you thinking of selling your food franchise to Russia? Good idea!”
Step № 42 – “Are you selling your business? Sell it to buyers from Russian”
Step № 43 – “Memorize the main governmental websites necessary for food market in Russia”
Step № 44 – “How a foreigner can find a job in Russia?”
Step № 45 – “Resort Cities in Russia. What for? For business of course”
Step № 46 – “How to find a distributor or buyer for FREE in the food market of Russia”
Step № 47 – “Holidays and days off in Russia. What for? Of course for business”
Step № 48 – “E-commerce in Russia”
Step № 49 – “Start your food business in Russia remotely and manage all processes without problems”
Step № 50 – “How to resolve complaints and disputes on the Russian food market”
Step № 51 – “So Alexander, how can I enter the Russian food market?”Backward