Content Localization

Importance of Content Localization in Your Business in 2022

Do you want more customers to engage with your brand and remain loyal to it?

Would you like those customers to purchase a higher number of products from you and to buy them more frequently? Content localization might be the key!

The importance of content localization is often underestimated by foreign sellers. A comprehensive localization strategy will make a difference to your success in Japan.

What is Content Localization?

Content localization is the process of converting written content from one language to another. The process of localizing content is not just about changing words and phrases; it’s also necessary to think carefully about how your target audience will receive each new message.

4 Advantages Of Content Localization That Let You Beat Your Competition. 

  1. Localized content helps to improve customer satisfaction and increase conversion rates, inquiries, and sales.
  2. Less than 10% of the population has fluent English proficiency in Japan according to this study. Japanese customers are more engaged with localized content due to its concise messaging and ease of understanding.
  3. Often it´s more cost-efficient to repurpose and localize your content than to produce new for your marketing.

In some cases, it´s necessary to adapt all content to the new domestic market to avoid any misunderstandings with your messaging.

How to Develop a Powerful Content Localization Strategy.

Specify your target group and geographical area.

The more detailed you set the specifics of your audience, the better your further research results in a good outcome.

Do your market research on trends and customer behavior.

Japanese customers are different. If you underestimate how they decide to buy a product, your chances of succeed are low.

Decide on the contents that need to be adapted.

Depending on your research results, you need a set of contents like images, videos, or text that need to be localized to the taste of the target group.

Don´t localize the content on your own.

Being an overseas company, it´s not sufficient to use a simple translator to locate content. You should get support from a local expert.


Content localization seems like a load of work and is often not the first thing that is minded by overseas sellers when expanding to Japan. However, if you want to scale your business here, then the adaption of content is inevitable. Specifying the target group, doing research on their local preferences and last but not least localizing the content are some of the essential parts to present your brand attractively to the market.

In short: The better your content is localized, the higher will be your sales.

Need Help in Japan Content Localization?

It can be overwhelming to customize the content to an audience that you are not familiar with and a language you don´t understand. To entrust experts with this task is a smart move instead of wondering about the odds of the Japanese market.

As part of our End-2-End Japan Market Entry Services, we at COVUE take over your content localization and interpret your content so that it attracts the market effectively.

japan work

Is Japan Actually A Hard Working Country

Japan as a whole has a reputation for being a hard-working country, with a strict work ethic and loyal employees. However, whether or not this dedication pays off in the country’s productivity is debatable, when comparing Japan to parts of the world less known for their worth ethic but still manage high productivity.

Japan Work the Same Hours as Everyone Else

According to OECD statistics, in 2020, the average worker in Japan puts in around 1,644 hours per year, compared to 1,779 hours in the United States, 1,538 hours in the United Kingdom, and 1,384 hours in Norway.

This number along with average weekly figures has been decreasing steadily since the 1980s, influenced partially by labor laws limiting overtime and work hours.

While hours are shortening overall, though, certain groups of employees in the labor force are still working long hours. Full-time, regular employees who work directly for their company are more likely to work overtime due to a mixture of social pressure from coworkers and their supervisors. Unfortunately, this can even result in karoshi or “death from overwork” related to heart or brain complications from a lack of sleep and rest. Karoshi usually makes headlines in Japan and internationally at least once a year.

Japanese Workers have many Unused Vacation Days

If you’ve ever worked at a Japanese company or Japanese school before, you have probably wished for more vacation days. Most employers will grant the current legal minimum of ten days of paid vacation to first-year employees, and no more.

However, despite this relatively low number of paid vacation days, most other employees will have barely touched them. This may be due to a combination of pressure from their company, cultural norms, and guilt. National statistics from 2018 show that only 52.4% of employees took their allotted paid leave.

A law that went into effect in 2019 now makes it mandatory for employees to take at least five days off per year. However, whether or not this will help workers actually take off is a separate question.

Nomikai and Mandatory Company Bonding

The amount of time that most coworkers spend together in Japan extends beyond just the office. Nomikai, or drinking parties, along with other types of company socializing, like golf and sports competitions, are a regular part of many professionals’ schedules. This constant socializing and activity is often compulsory or feels that way too many employees.

Drinking with coworkers and socializing can be entertaining and exciting, of course, but at the end of the day, these activities are an extension of work.

So, are the Japanese Really Hard Workers?

Cultural practices and societal expectations place a lot of pressure on workers in Japan to put a lot of time and energy into whatever they do for their employer. In terms of productivity measurements like GDP, however, it’s difficult to tell if all the effort is productive for Japan’s economy. It could be, though, that economic gain is not the only way to measure the benefits of having a dedicated and diligent workforce.

Market Trends: Selling Fashion and Beauty in Japan

Consumers in Japan are some of the most sophisticated and hard-to-please in the world, yet with open wallets for products, they trust.

Here are some facets of Japan’s rag trade, beauty trends, and beyond—including makeup, youth, and senior fashion—that marketers in Japan or those that plan a market entry into Japan should know, as well as how shopping for all this stuff is changing.

The major key is self-expression for those times when not in harness in the working world.

Exhibitor feedback from the autumn Fashion World Tokyo Show reveals that Japan’s consumers have some particular tastes. Accessories and bags with a low bling factor, for one. They also prefer clothes that don’t wrinkle or fade, which makes clothing produced using completely natural materials and dyes less attractive. In footwear, they favor more comfortable, less formal styles.

The skincare game and other altered states

Bihaku – white skin as the epitome of beauty

Bihaku is an integral element of a sophisticated skincare regimen, encompassing makeup removal, cleansing, lotion, serums and moisturizers, exfoliators, and more. That self-care actually extends to what’s eaten and drunk—collagen-rich and fermented foods, seaweed and oily fish, for example, and green tea—as well as onsen bathing.

The mochi skin phenomenon

There’s a definite desire among Japanese women to attain what’s known as “mochi skin”—essentially a complexion that mimics the soft, smooth texture of mochi rice cake desserts.

In vivid contrast to that flawless skin, Japan’s young fashionistas are applying colored eyeliner (yellow, green, pink, and more), or maybe under-eye blush or glossy, glittery eye shadow.

There’s a vibrant gloss for the lips, too, in fruity shades. Younger Japanese women also go in for colorful nail art, including what are known as “nuance nails,” with each nail covered in different colors, designs, and decorations.

Cutting edge contact lenses and hair care

Colored and patterned contact lenses—the latter known as “circle lenses”—hold a particular appeal in the land of manga, anime and cosplay.

Important to know for overseas marketers is the fact that while some circle lenses are nearsighted,
farsighted or astigmatic folks, most are pure fashion statements.

Japanese manufacturers have also devised some radically new tech for hair care. Louvredo’s Fukugen hair dryer uses a special far-infrared wavelength of 6 ~ 20 μm and negative ionization to shake the moisture out of the hair, eliminating the usual damage to hair proteins that hot air causes. Lumielina’s Bio programming range of care and styling products use a new type of ceramic that not only shields hair from heat but also actually improves its smoothness, moisture balance, and gloss.

Online fashion buying habits of the Japanese

Buying fashion and beauty products remotely has always been a bit tricky unless you know exactly what you’re getting, especially when it comes to fit/drape and shade. That doesn’t stop many, though. You see ladies avidly scrolling through clothes and accessories online. On a train or in a coffee shop, for example, they may be hunting for bargains on name-brand goods at a flash sale site.

Smartphone apps are changing the game as well. One called Bodygram uses AI deep-learning and machine-learning algorithms based on just a front and profile photo to the size you perfectly, like a master tailor. Augmented reality (AR) makeup mirrors from app developer Perfect Corp. are helping Estée
Lauder, L’Oréal, and Amway give shoppers the chance to virtually apply products via smartphone
as well. New Balance has set up machines in major Japanese department stores
and elsewhere to do 3D scans of your foot for an exact fit.

The customer is not king, but god in Japan. Anything you can offer them to enhance their shopping experience might get you into their good graces – and purchasing decision.

The Japanese senior fashion market: A graceful transition into maturity

Older women in Japan are increasingly opting for mature styles in both hair and what they wear, not seeking to duplicate the fashions their daughters and granddaughters pursue. That includes a more natural, personal look and going gracefully gray up top. All featured older women rocking distinctive styles and dos.

That’s one powerful indication that designing for and selling to the senior market is worthwhile.

Functional fashion is not a niche, but mainstream in Japan

For marketers, some other pivots include temperature—such as wide-legged pants to stay cool in Japan’s
steamy summertime, and Uniqlo’s “heat-tech” garments for keeping warm in the winter. Other upcoming segments include fashion and beauty addressing environmental, ethical, and sustainability issues, like e.g. anti-pollution skincare products.

Planning to sell Fashion and Beauty Product In Japan?

Having local help onboard is essential in order to be successful in Japan Market Entry. Don’t know where to start? We can help!

COVUE is a trustworthy Japanese company that has import licenses for many product categories. Let COVUE’s regulatory experts help you to speed up the market entry process so can that you can focus on your business. We’re here to help! It’s what we do best!

Japan Luxury

Understanding New Trends and Opportunities in Japan’s Luxury Industry

Japan is the second-largest luxury market in the world – behind the United States and ahead of mainland China – with 3.6 trillion yen (about US$33 billion) spent each year in luxury goods.

  • Luxury labels, built on exclusivity, used to mean that having an online presence was not necessary; not the case anymore
  • digital channels must used by companies to get leverage in the market (search engines, social media, email, websites and mobile apps etc.)

Japan’s luxury industry:

  • GFC then disasters in Tōhoku and Fukushima, luxury spending in Japan shrank by over 1 trillion yen ($10.6 billion) by 2012
  • report by McKinsey & Company: Japanese luxury market… to maintain positive growth
  • 82% of luxury executives surveyed responded that their sales outlook for 2017 is significantly better than 2016.
  • by 2020, it is anticipated that the market will grow by a moderate rate of 3% to 4% per year
  • Japanese department stores are still the main venue of purchase for Japanese luxury consumers
  • 70% of people polled buy in Department store representing 50% overall revenue
  • Younger generation is buying brands like Céline, Balenciaga, and Gucci
  • Older generation are purchasing from brands like Hermès and Chanel, which are perceived as “very reliable” and “have a heritage.”

Digital marketing in the luxury industry:

  • a renewed interest in Japan in the past year or so due to recent market growth
  • Japan accounts for 11% of global luxury spending
  • Luxe Digital recently published a report suggesting that digital influences at least 80% of all luxury sales

Digital marketing techniques that are currently trending in the luxury industry:

  • Content is King
    • Storytelling, being able to tell the story behind the brand, explaining the values that define it: Luxury goods as much about image, style, and intangibles than about the actual quality of the product
    • Create contents that are aspirational and appeal to the customer’s desire to display their status
    • A luxury brand gives their customers an opportunity to showcase a lifestyle and a value system
  • Successful digital marketing campaigns
    • Burberry: social media campaigns and creative videos that combine history, fashion, and the appeal of a glamorous lifestyle. YouTube – 99 million viewers, 317,000 subscribers. Recent ad received 12 million views within a month (holiday campaign tribute for the movie Billy Elliot – Celebrating 15 years of Billy Elliot).
  • Social Media Marketing
    • Visual social networks like Pinterest provide a huge opportunity for luxury brands
    • Photographs are one of the best media for marketing luxury products
    • Chanel: one of the most ‘pinned’ brands on Pinterest – over 1,244 pins of Chanel products pinned per day
  • Boost SEO
    • A well-executed SEO strategy is one of the most lucrative digital marketing investments that a luxury company can do.
    • Google is one of the most significant channels for luxury
    • A large proportion of luxury brands have begun investing in SEO strategies
    • Tiffany: bought into SEO, have firm, successful strategies which have led to them dominating the search results

Importing Luxury Goods In Japan? We got you!

Having local help onboard is essential in order to be successful in Japan Market Entry. Don’t know where to start? We can help!

COVUE is a trustworthy Japanese company that has import licenses for many product categories. Let COVUE’s regulatory experts help you to speed up the market entry process so can that you can focus on your business. We’re here to help! It’s what we do best!

Japan looks to ease virus state of emergency ahead of Olympics

Japan expects to ease a coronavirus state of emergency in Tokyo and most areas this weekend. New daily cases are falling just as the country begins making final preparations for the Olympics starting in just over a month.

Back in late March, Japan was struggling to slow down a wave of infections. New daily cases were soaring above 7000 at one point and seriously ill patients were filling up the hospitals in Tokyo, Osaka and other metropolitan areas.

Daily cases have since subsided significantly and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is expected to downgrade the state of emergency when it expires on Sunday to a less-stringent quasi-emergency for several weeks.

Despite concerns raised by medical experts and the public over the potential risks of holding the Olympics, Suga has said he is determined to hold a “safe and secure” games starting July 23.

Holding the Olympics before elections in the autumn is also a political gamble for Suga, whose support ratings have tumbled due to public dissatisfaction over his virus measures, a vaccination drive criticized as being too slow, and lack of a clear explanation of how he will ensure the virus doesn’t spread during the Olympics.

Government-appointed experts met Wednesday to analyze the situation ahead of Suga’s decision on the emergency measures and expressed concern about the potential for infections to climb again after measures are eased. Suga is expected to make a final decision Thursday after more meetings.

Suga placed Tokyo, Osaka and two other areas under a state of emergency in late April and has since expanded the area to 10 prefectures and extended the measures twice. Japan does not enforce hard lockdowns and the state of emergency allows prefectural leaders to order closures or shorter hours for non-essential business in return for compensation to those who comply and fines for violators. Stay-at-home and other measures for the general population are only requests and are increasingly ignored.

Ryuji Wakita, the director-general of the National Institute of Infectious Diseases who heads a government COVID-19 advisory board, said infections have decreased in many areas, but the slowing has bottomed out in the Tokyo region. He warned that infections could increase after an easing of the measures. He said signs of a rebound are already seen among younger people.

Even as more people are vaccinated and most of the country’s 36 million senior citizens are expected to be fully inoculated by the end of July, younger people are largely unvaccinated and infections among them could quickly burden hospitals, Wakita said.

“In order to prevent another upsurge, it is crucial to prevent the people from roaming around during the Olympics and summer vacation,” he said. Experts say it is crucial to accelerate the vaccine rollout.

What is Trade Compliance and Why Does it Matter?

In today’s global marketplace, companies do business both within and outside Japan. Your supply chain depends on following various trade agreements, international trade regulations, and tariff classification.

Yet, even with these specialties, many companies unintentionally receive import and export violations, and these violations lead to hefty penalties and fines for failure with trade compliance functions.

International business is more complex than ever before, and this is why you need a clear understanding of the rules of export control, customs authorities, and export laws. As a result, exporting and importing have become an essential part of day-to-day operations. Since your business relies on global trade, your company needs to ensure that your operations have solid global trade compliance.

To remain competitive, companies must have a comprehensive understanding of the laws and regulations which govern their imports and exports. Very simply, that’s what trade compliance is all about!

What is trade compliance?

Trade compliance means to comply with international export, trade, and financial laws.

Who is required to comply?

Businesses from across all industries are obligated to adhere to compliance requirements. It is not just a regulation for security-sensitive industries such as telecommunications, IT, research, aerospace, or financial institutions. The penalties for non-compliance can be severe.

Why does trade compliance matter?

Trade compliance is vital for importing and exporting and is a responsibility for all businesses. The larger the business, the greater the compliance expectations. In order to be compliant, you must understand what rules and regulations applicable to your business. To be compliant means to meet the demands of customers and suppliers while supporting sustainability, long-term growth, and competitive advantages. These are key elements to a successful global supply chain.

Benefits of being trade compliant:

  • Corporate reputations and employees are protected by facilitating legal and responsible trading.
  • Exposure to fines and penalties are minimized.
  • Promotes customer satisfactions by avoiding shipment delays.
  • Saves money by avoiding delays, investigation and penalties.

Consequences of non-compliance:

  • Shipment delays
  • Financial penalties
  • Criminal sanctions

Key elements of trade compliance:

  • Tariff classification – The correct classification of goods using commodity and tariff codes is fundamental for customs compliance as well as establishing correct duty rates, the origin of goods, Intrastat, export control, and many other customs procedures.
  • Preferential origin is associated with a specific trade agreement between two countries or blocks of countries. If the goods you’re exporting have a preferential origin, they are likely to attract reduced or nil rates of duty when they enter your customer’s country.
  • Non-preferential origin is where it dictates the origin of the product being shipped. The rules associated with the identification of origin are specific to the rules of the importing country.
  • IncotermsIncoterms have globally recognized trade terms used to clearly define the responsibilities of the buyer and seller along the shipment lifecycle, they are integral to a contract so that both parties are clear on delivery, costs, risk, and responsibility.
  • Licenses & Permits – It is your responsibility to check if you require a permit or license when importing or exporting certain products. There are controls, for example, on military/paramilitary goods, technology, medicines, chemicals, artworks, plants, and animals.

Your goods will be confiscated and will be delayed if you are importing and exporting without the right license.

  • Exports controls – Certain products are subject to export control legislation as they could have harmful uses. it is your responsibility to classify all products against the appropriate legislation. This will ensure the correct license requirements can be established.
  • Customs Management – Have a clear plan of action if your business is subject to a customs investigation.
  • Screening – Screening customers, vendors, and transaction data against sanctioned, politically exposed persons and other risky entities will help ensure you are not inadvertently doing business with an undesirable person.
  • Valuation – Every shipment must have an appropriate valuation associated with it, which should be defendable if challenged. The valuation must comply with one of the six valuation methodologies approved by the World Trade Organization (WTO) and be declared on the Single Administrative Document (SAD or form C88).

Market Entry in Japan

Having local help on board is essential in order to be successful in Japan Market Entry. Don’t know where to start? We can help!

COVUE is a trustworthy Japanese company that has import licenses for many product categories. Let COVUE’s regulatory experts help you to speed up the market entry process so can that you can focus on your business. We’re here to help! It’s what we do best!


Solar power has always been in the eye of the global economic market. More and more businesses understand that the more sustainable the business practices are, the bigger the response from the customers is.

In Japan solar power is being used more and more on farmland across Japan not only to grow crops but also with the purpose to generate power. It allows for farming to create a two-part source of income and efficient use of farmland.

Furthermore, the increase of solar power use on Japan’s farmlands helps the Japanese government’s goal of net-zero emissions by 2050. Of course, this sustainable generating of power doesn’t come without its issues.

At the Farmdo Group in Gunma prefecture, solar panels installed on top of greenhouses have been generating electricity since 2014, while mizuna potherb mustard, arugula, and lettuce grow inside. Covering an area of 48 hectares, producing power to supply about 10,000 households.

Under the “feed-in tariff” system, power companies purchase electricity generated from renewable energy sources at a price determined by the government over a period of 20 years. The Farmdo Group expects to recoup its solar-related investment in seven to eight years. “The additional revenue from selling electricity helps stabilize agricultural operations, and lower the barriers to starting a farm,” a group official said. Installing solar panels to the portion of agricultural land must be converted to non-agricultural use and support equipment must be set up.

Installing solar panels to the portion of agricultural land must be converted to non-agricultural use and support equipment must be set up.

As stated by the Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries Ministry of Japan the total number of permits for such conversions grew from 96 in fiscal 2013 to 1,992 in fiscal 2018. Over that span, the amount of agricultural land apportioned for solar power generation increased from 19 hectares to 560 hectares.

The Japan Photovoltaic Energy Association estimates that by 2050, about 30% of land used for solar power generation will be agriculture-related.

“It is important to balance agriculture and power generation,” said Takashi Nozu, an associate professor at Waseda University. “It is also necessary to carefully consider how to increase profitability, given the initial investment and maintenance costs involved.”



Foreign Online Sellers in Japan

A “Foreign Online Seller” is a person or company outside of Japan selling and shipping to online buyers in Japan.

Foreign Online Sellers cannot fully comply with Japan import and tax rules for importing and selling products in Japan. To resolve this, the government of Japan has implemented new rules for foreign online sellers to ensure sales and import tax compliance.

Declared Import Value:

Online sellers with no company established in Japan must declare the online sale value of their imported product to be the same as the import value on their shipping invoice. Japan Customs will apply Duty and Consumer Import Tax based on the online selling price. Japan Customs also requires supporting documentation in the form of a Foreign Online Seller Report (FOSR) to be part of the Shipping Invoice. This report displays your store name or website, inventory, and selling price of all products being imported to Japan.

To ensure Sellers do not undervalue their import, Japan Customs will conduct a selling price search to ensure your selling is within an acceptable margin of the same or similar products. If your Declared Value/Selling price is below the acceptable margin, Japan Customs will apply a Fair Market import value to your shipment. You will then be charged import and duty tax based on the revised value.

During the import process, Japan Customs will:

  1. Review your Store/website and Product selling price to confirm it is the same as the import value.
  2. Check your pricing history to ensure the pricing was not recently lowered to avoid import tax
  3. Monitor your selling price to ensure your pricing does not increase excessively after import.

Sales Tax: Foreign Online Sellers

Profit Tax in Japan: all companies must comply with Profit Tax laws. To claim wholesale, purchasing, import tax, or manufacturing costs on your commercial/shipping invoice, you must sell (transferring) the product to a distributor or subsidiary (another company who will resell the products or to your subsidiary) in Japan.

  • Online sellers with no company established in Japan, cannot comply with Japan profit tax laws. Therefore, Japan Customs and Tax have implemented import requirements for online sellers. Online sellers must declare the online sale value of their imported product and pay the Duty and Taxes based on that value.
  • Japan Customs has become very strict with online sellers. Imported products will be stopped. Japan Customs will review your online account to compare your sale price to your declared value. If they do not match, you will be charged additional taxes and possible penalty fees. Multiple infractions (failure to comply) can result in your company being restricted to import products into Japan.
  • Do not modify your online pricing during import. Japan Customs has access to online seller pricing history. If Japan Customs believes you have intentionally changed your online pricing to avoid taxes, you may be restricted from all future imports.
  • As a policy, COVUE IOR services are fully compliant with Japan Customs and Tax laws. COVUE does not accept shipments that do not comply with Japan import and Tax rules and regulations.

Want to Export your Products to Japan?

Let COVUE’s regulatory experts help you to speed up the market entry process so can that you can focus on your business. We’re here to help! It’s what we do best.

At COVUE IOR, we seek to make the import process simple, compliant, and accessible to all sellers of all sizes. COVUE is not an ACP. COVUE is the direct IOR: we own our license, and our compliance support is in-house. We trusted by 000’s of Sellers and Shipping providers.

How Outsourcing Staffing Services can help your business reduce cost

Employees- whether permanent or part-time, are a company’s best asset. They play an important role in your business’ success. You want to ensure you are hiring the right people to join your team. Outsourcing Staffing Services is one way to ensure this. One of the best features of outsourced staff is its scalability. You can reduce recruitment costs by partnering with dedicated staffing companies that are able to utilize strategies, get access to better talent, train and retain them. Here’s how dedicated staffing can help you reduce your costs.

  1. Shared Risks

During economic uncertainly, recruiting demands can suddenly drop or spike up. Outsourcing dedicated staffing can enable your company to pass along the cost to the service provider.

  1. Improved Effectiveness of Recruitment

Acquiring new employee burdens your internal resources – sourcing, screening, short-listing candidates, interviews and negotiating offers, employee turnover can put stress on resources. It takes time to find the qualified candidate for your company. Having a job position unfilled can reduce productivity and lead to lost opportunities. Outsourcing staffing services provide you faster hiring with the ability to deploy on-time.

  1. Workforce Flexibility

One of the advantages of using dedicated outsourcing staffing is that it’s easier to support long- or short-term projects while minimizing onboarding cost. You can fill your current needs without any commitment of continuous employment.
Talent acquisition can be a costly process. But partnering with a Dedicated Staffing Outsourcing company can make the best of your recruitment costs

Talent acquisition can be a costly process. But partnering with an Outsourcing company can make the best of your recruitment costs.

Looking for Dedicated staffing solutions? We got you covered! COVUE offers the most extensive and cost-effective Best-in-Class dedicated staffing solutions in the industry.

Get a quote now

Got questions? We’re happy to help you. Contact us now!

Use of Inside Sales to Drive Service Revenue Performance

Post-sale service support revenue has become an important element of Top Line growth in many organizations. The revenue annuity stream it provides can be highly predictive, reliable and generate margins exceeding 30%. Examples of these revenue streams include:

· Service Contracts

· Preventive Maintenance Support

· On-Demand Service Support

· Installation Support

· Service Parts

· Technical Assistance/Call support

· Application Support

· IT Support

· Equipment Usage/Transactional Support

The following discussion will focus on use of Inside Sales to drive Service Contract Revenue and considerations for implementation of the function in an organization.

In most cases, Service contracts are attached to specific equipment or systems. Contract types will vary based on coverage options. It is important to use a formalized process to determine types of contract offerings. Offerings should be based on the Voice of Customer data and strategic intent of the service business in your organization. All contract types can be sold effectively through an Inside Sales operation.

There are (4) key process elements required for an Inside Sales operation:

1. Call Preparation

2. Call execution

3. Administration Follow-up

4. Closing

Each process element will have varied steps depending on Sales Call Types. Following describes the Sales Call Types and the advantage of using an Inside Sales function for execution:

· New Contracts (Point of Sale) – The best time to sell a service contract on new equipment purchases is at point of sale. In this case, many companies will offer extended warranties at discounted pricing for terms up to five (5) years. The Sales representative will introduce the offering. However, the sales representative is often not the best person to close the business. They can run the risk of losing the sale due to perceived added cost or may not have the knowledge to engage in a conversation to put the customer in the right contract type. This is where Inside Sales can help. These representatives are trained to understand customer requirements and the correct contract types based on budget and strategy of the customer. They can follow-up at a predetermined point with the customer based on input of Product Sales. This redirects the responsibility of contract sales to Inside Sales allowing the Sales Representative to focusing on the next capital sale.

· New Contracts (not previously secured) – It is difficult to follow-up on all equipment that does not have an attached contract. Often, Product Sales lack the time required to for follow up. Inside Sales is an effective tool for this task. They can maintain the unattached equipment data base and schedule follow-up calls accordingly. In many cases, the sale can be made over the phone. If not, they can team up with Product Sales and/or the Field Service Engineer for customer follow-up. It is an efficient cost effective alternative to On-site visits when customer interest may not be fully engaged.

· Contract Renewals – This is a highly effective use of an Inside Sales organization. The common term of Service Contract is one year. Each contract needs follow-up prior to expiration. Inside Sales has the ability to schedule follow-up calls at predetermined intervals to ensure the contract is renewed on time. The Inside Sales team can review service history and recommend alternate contract options that best fit the customer requirements. BIC contract renewal rates run 85 – 90%.

· Upselling – Environment and Equipment usage can vary throughout the year. A customer may need to move into a contract type better suited for their current situation. Inside Sales can confirm Service History prior to the contract renewal process and suggest the best service contract option. Inside Sales leverages their experience and data for the upsell, driving increased revenue and improved customer satisfaction.

Another advantage of an Inside Sales function is the ability to gain Market & Customer Intelligence. Inside Sale are engaging in customer contact daily. Leveraging this contact to obtain customer feedback is highly effective.

Implementation of an Inside Sales operation can be costly and time consuming. Organizations without an Inside Sales department typically lack the resources to plan the necessary tasks and strategy. In some cases, an organization with and Inside Sales team delivering suboptimal performance, may not have established an effective strategy or lack proper focus. There are excellent outsourcing options available for Inside Sales that have the expertise and technology needed for Best-in-Class performance. Investigate the options available prior to implementation of your plan.

Inside Sales is an effective and efficient way to sell Service contracts, improve attachment rates, and gather market and customer intelligence. Outsourcing options exist to reduce implementation costs and improve performance. Expect increased Service Revenue as a result of these efforts.

Got questions? We’re happy to help you. Contact us now!