Market entry strategy

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A market entry strategy is the planned method of delivering goods or services to a new target market and distributing them there. When importing or exporting services, it refers to establishing and managing contracts in a foreign country.


Many companies successfully operate in a niche market without ever expanding into new markets. Some businesses achieve increased sales, brand awareness and business stability by entering a new market. Developing a market-entry strategy involves a thorough analysis of potential competitors and possible customers. Some of the relevant factors that are important in deciding the viability of entry into a particular market include trade barriers, localized knowledge, price localization, competition, and export subsidies.

Timing of market entry[edit]

Lymbersky has said that "What countries to enter and when mainly depends on the financial resources of a company, the product life-cycle and the product itself." [1] The different strategies available are:


Some of the most common market entry strategies are: directly by setup of an entity in the market, directly exporting products, indirectly exporting using a reseller, distributor, or sales outsourcing, and producing products in the target market.[2] Others include:

See also Permanent establishment risk

Market entry and trade risks[edit]

Some of the risks incurred when entering a new market and start domestic or international trade include:

While some companies prefer to develop their own their market entry plans, other outsource to specialised companies. The knowledge of the local or target market by those specialized companies can mitigate trade risk.

Other market entry strategies include:

  • Production at home
    • Indirect exporting (export merchant)
    • Direct exporting (foreign customer, agent, distributor, representative office, foreign branch, foreign subsidiary)
  • Production abroad
    • without direct investment (management contract, franchising, licensing, contract manufacturing)
    • with direct investment (partly owned subsidiary, acquisition of a foreign company, set up a new company, equity joint venture)


  • Reviving Traditions in Research on International Market Entry, Po Li (Auteur), T. Li, JAI Press, 2003 ISBN 0-7623-1044-8 ISBN 978-0762310449
  • On durable goods markets with entry and adverse selection, Janssen, M. Roy, CANADIAN JOURNAL OF ECONOMICS, 2004, VOL 37; NUMBER 3, pages 552-589 ISBN ISSN 0008-4085


  1. ^ Lymbersky, C.: (2008) "Market Entry Strategies", p. 364; Management Laboratory Press, Hamburg
  2. ^ Corporate documents, Chapter 7: Market Entry strategies

Ways to enter international market