How to Start Import and Export Business in India from Home/Office
Since the inception of eCommerce, the import and export business has become quite lucrative in India. It allows small companies to reach and cater the global audience. In recent times, we have seen a surge in growth of export and import of goods and services.
A lot of small and medium level entrepreneurs start this type of business from their homes or small office spaces. Moreover, the economic policies have also led to the popularity of such businesses. However, as an entrepreneur starting afresh, it is important that one knows about the procedure and documentation process required to start their own import and export business.
Getting Started with Registering and Opening Import Export Business
To start your import-export business in India from home or office, you need to complete the following procedure:
Pan Card: You need to have a Pan card issued by the Income Tax Department for registration.
Register Your Firm: You need to get your business registered first with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India, irrespective of whether it’s a sole proprietorship, in partnership, private limited company, or LLP.
You can hire a lawyer for this purpose to help you with the company registration process. You also need to obtain a Service Tax registration or a VAT registration certificate. Follow this guide to know more about the registration process.
Have A Current Bank Account: You have to open a current bank account in order to carry out the business dealings.
Obtain An Import Export Code (IEC): The import-export code issued by the government of India is mandatory to start an export-import business in the country. You have to apply for it online at the DGFT website.
Here is the list of documents required to apply for it.
Getting A Registration-cum-Membership-Certificate (RCMC): Once you get the IEC, you need to obtain the Registration-cum-Membership-Certificate (RCMC). It is granted by the Export Promotion Councils. You can obtain the certificate from any one of the 26 export promotion councils. After you get the IEC and RCMC, you will be able to start your import and export business.
Hire An eCommerce Shipping Company: You also need to hire a logistics company that would be responsible for delivering your products to the customers worldwide. Shiprocket is a courier aggregator that help such businesses by providing them multiple shipping partners to ship their products internationally on cheapest shipping charges.
Shiprocket is a complete customer experience platform for direct commerce, trusted by over 1.5 lakh brands. It provides the cheapest shipping rates, widest reach and the best customer service that your business needs.
Contact A Customs Clearing Agent: You might need to take the assistance of a customs clearing agent who will guide you about the process of getting your stuff cleared at the ports, customs duty charges, transportation charges, etc involved in the import-export business.
Import Export Business Opportunities for Entrepreneurs
Starting an import-export business can be a great way for eCommerce businesses. The import-export economy is booming as the government has set up several schemes to benefit entrepreneurs.
There are lots of avenues businesses can explore. Some examples of popular import export businesses may include –
Investing in Online Marketplaces
Online marketplaces are an integral part of the online import-export businesses. Through this, you can become an exporter to enlist as a vendor and connect with customers across the globe.
Exploring International Markets
As each country has some unique resources/products that can be exported, at the same time there are items that can be imported. You need to explore what you can export to the needy country and in exchange for what you can Import. For example, if you sell Kashmiri shawls, you can start an export business for that product and sell it to the countries with cold climate around the world.
Promoting and Selling Others Products
In an export-import business, it is always possible to look out for business opportunities by selling the products that you don’t manufacture on your own. You can collaborate with other manufacturers to sell their items in the international markets. For example,
- Tea and Tobacco: Both are produced in India widely and have a good demand in the international market.
- Leather and Medical Products: India has a well-developed leather industry and you can export products, such as wallets, belts, toys, and handbags, and so on. In the same manner, India is slowly becoming a major exporter of medical equipment like gloves, gauzes, bandages, face masks, and so on.
If performed with prudence and care, export and import businesses can always be encouraging and help open up new avenues for your company.