Identify and evaluate your business strengths and weaknesses

Whether you're planning your first export venture or expanding into a new market, an internal business analysis will help you to identify and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your business, ensure your decision to export is aligned with your business goals and objectives, and establish if your product and/or service will have a competitive advantage within your chosen market segment.

An internal business analysis is also a great method to identify your organisational capabilities, which generally includes:

  • human resources, such as number, quality, skills and experience
  • physical and material resources, such as machines, land and buildings
  • financial resources, such as money and credit
  • information resources, such as pool of knowledge and databases
  • intellectual resources, such as copyrights, designs, and patents
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Keep in mind that these capabilities may need to change once you start exporting.

Identify internal and external factors

A Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis can help you identify the internal and external factors that will affect future business performance.

Try to be as objective as possible when completing your SWOT analysis. You need to determine if the benefits of exporting exceed the anticipated costs, so consider asking yourself how:

  • can you use your strengths to take advantage of the opportunities identified?
  • can you use your strengths to overcome the threats identified?
  • can you overcome the identified weaknesses to take advantage of the opportunities?
  • will you minimise your weaknesses to overcome the identified threats?

Useful resources