Challenges faced by companies entering Japan

Challenges faced by companies entering Japan

Each challenge will vary depending on the company's situation.

This time, We will tell you three ways to solve problems that occur when you first enter the Japanese market.

①Language barrier 

Most countries in the world have their native language + English, and while there are many countries where English is spoken as a second language, Japan is an island country, and less than 10% of the population can understand English.

Moreover, compared to other countries, Japanese people find English extremely unappealing, and they leave the site without even reading the manuals displayed in English.

The most important thing is that if our brand site is not localized in Japanese, you cannot even get on the sales stage.
We see automatic translation using google translate, or if there is a Japanese speaker in the company, he/she translates the Japanese and uploads it to the website, but there is a lot of unnatural Japanese, which may concern Japanese audience.

Therefore, it is highly recommended to ask a Japanese company for the translation and try to express it in appropriate Japanese.

②Logistics problem

Countries connected on the continent can be transported by land, so transportation costs are relatively low.

As an island country, Japan requires air or sea transportation, which takes time and costs. How can we reduce this cost? Or how to transform the value and sell it?

We recommend cross-border E-commmerce site using AmazonJP, Qoo10, etc., which are relatively easy to start selling at the beginning of the expansion. During the first stage, we can start selling your products on these sites at low cost as a test, and collect opinions from consumers through questionnaires. Among them, in order to explore your company's positioning in the Japanese market, we can refer to the evaluations in consumer questionnaires.Of course, it is also necessary to analyze the competitive situation and the entire market at the same time.
When you see a winning position, you contract a distribution warehouse in Japan.We recommend that you ship from a distribution warehouse in Japan, where you can reduce the cost by collectively shipping to Japan and can respond quickly when receiving an order.

③Customer support

Foreign companies that have expanded into Japan often say that Japanese people are extremely cautious when purchasing products.

In some countries, there is a culture of "just buy it, and if it doesn't work, just return it." Meanwhile, in Japan, there is not much culture of returning goods, so the return rate is quite low and prudent to purchase.

On the other hand, once a product is purchased, it is unlikely that the product will be returned, and if the product is of good quality, there is a high possibility that the product will be purchased for a long time. Customer support is key here.

In addition to responding to inquiries by e-mail and telephone, customer support that can be completed online through FAQs is also important. Moreover, in order to ensure effective communication with your Japanese customers, we would recommend you to have a Japanese staff or those fluent in Japanese be in charge of customer support.

Regarding customer support, be sure to prepare an environment where Japanese people can respond.

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