A new online course will help small businesses explore exporting opportunities in international markets. Global Enterprise: A Primer on Exporting is a free, self-paced course that provides practical guidance on exploring international markets.
The new course is available from the Small Business Administration training website at www.sba.gov/training. To access the course, click on "Free Online Courses," and then select the first course listed under International Trade.
The course is a comprehensive training module using script and audio to provide fundamental information about selling in global markets. It illustrates how to identify international markets, develop an export strategy, make and receive international payments, and finance trade operations, plus guidance on determining a firm's readiness and suitability for exporting. The Exporting Primer includes more than 45 direct links to many key international resources.
Exporting can be an avenue to tap into the increasing global marketplace. There are some 236,000 small business exporters, representing 97 percent of all U.S. exporters, and they generate some 30 percent of export sales. In 2007, U.S. exports of goods and services amounted to $1.6 trillion, with small businesses accounting for nearly $500 billion of those exports.
"The advantages to exporting can mean big opportunity for entrepreneurs that want to capitalize on emerging markets worldwide," said SBA Acting Administrator Sandy K. Baruah. "The SBA recognizes the value of reaching out to small businesses early in the trade game by using technology that is readily accessible and easy to use."
In addition, the SBA's partnership with the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Export-Import Bank offers federal export programs and services through the U.S. Export Assistance Centers. Small businesses can receive a full range of business export assistance under one roof to makes it easier to get the help needed to compete and succeed in the global marketplace.
"More now than ever, small business exports play a major role in our economy," said Luz Hopewell, SBA director of international trade. "Through the new online exporting course, the SBA will be able to help more small businesses access new markets, sell more goods overseas, and create new jobs at home."
Course participants completing the 30-minute online training programs can earn a certificate of completion from the SBA, with their name, date and course title. The Export Primer course is one of nearly 30 online tutorials offered by the SBA on its virtual campus, the Small Business Training Network (www.sba.gov/training).
SBTN is part of the SBA's Office of Entrepreneurship Education, which combines the agency's online education programs, youth outreach, and outreach to underserved markets under a single umbrella.