CEE region: Online Export is Growing Unstoppably

We understand that you have been putting off the topic of expansion. It is a major step and a complex project with many variables. However, whether it is the EU geopolitical situation, financial stability or the desire to grow, in 2023 majority of companies decided to take the CEE region seriously. Plainly put, If yesterd the expansion was a plan, today its a must. 

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CEE Region: A Cultural Meltingpot With a Desire to Grow

Our region is a hotbed of diverse cultures and complex digital markets growing from them.

Despite the rise in energy prices and the worsening geopolitical situation, the CEE region maintains the largest year-on-year growth. Other markets are already quite saturated and are not growing nearly as fast.

If you want to grow, there is still room for export to CEE.

If you are looking to expand, there are still options when exporting to CEE. Source: Eurostat, Statista

The Export Numbers Are on Your Side

According to McKinsey’s CEE report, in the five-year period 2017-2021, the CEE region surpassed its European neighbors divided into two groups: Digital Leaders (Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway and Sweden) and the Big Five (France, Germany , Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom).

The two areas where the CEE region outperformed these two groups were digital economy growth (CEE 10.9%; Digital Leaders 7.0%; Big Five 6.5%) and GDP growth (CEE 3.6%; Digital Leaders 2 .8%; Big Five 0.2%).

Two areas in which the CEE region outperformed these two groups were digital economy growth and GDP growth . Source: Mckinsey

And Will the Locals Buy Imports?

According to a McKinsey report, companies that expand into new markets experience an average increase in sales of 40%.

The expansion of the local e-shop throughout the EU is now a standard part of the growth plan. It is also quite common in the European online environment to buy products from foreign manufacturers and suppliers.

In short, e-commerce knows no borders.

According to a survey of customer behavior by PwC, 47% of consumers worldwide now shop online with sellers from abroad.

Expansion and Diversification of the Income Stream

The digital world is changing rapidly. Whether it’s our shopping journey, content consumption or social interactions, the pandemic has had a profound impact on our digital behavior patterns.

It is the diversification of income streams that can be your fulcrum in the coming uncertainty and rapidly changing customer behavior.

In the world of information, market behavior can also be skewed by an unfavorable election result or a local geopolitical agenda. It is the expansion that represents a long-term opportunity to distribute the risk of short-term effects in the global market matrix.

Exporting to CEE: 4 Key Tools for Destination Country Research

Each country has its own cultural, business and political specificities. It is precisely their correct grasp and adaptation of the product strategy that are key to successful expansion.

In the past, expansion analysis was practically unavailable for smaller projects. However, thanks to digital tools for market analysis, even smaller e-shops no longer have to grope in the dark.

1. Google Export Tools

We recommend that you do an initial analysis of the target market based on the inquiries and search volumes that are freely available to you. Google brings you several very useful tools.

As part of the Think with Google platform , Market Finder helps identify suitable markets for your product.

The new Google Trends offers a global view of your services. Source: Google Trends

The Google Keywords Planner , which is a free part of the Google Ads portal, can also be useful for mapping search phrases in the target language.

Google Trends, on the other hand, provides insights into currently searched trends around the world and their real development over time. All three tools are provided by Google for free.

2. Analysis of the PPC Mix of the Competition

Did you know that all of your competitor’s ads must be centrally available? Thanks to EU privacy laws, you have access to any of your competitors’ ads.

This allows you to improve your own PPC strategies and adapt the campaign to what works for the strongest players in the market.

Analyze Facebook and Instagram: Meta Ad Library

Meta Ad Library provides transparency and information about the ads served on Facebook and Instagram, so you can analyze and optimize your ad campaigns based on real data from the best local players.

You will effectively check which types of campaigns work in the long term and what tone of voice and creative will need to be used.

Meta Ad Library it will tell you all about the competitor’s ads on Facebook and Instagram. Source: Facebook.com

Analyze the Google Ads mix: Google Transparency Center

This center provides useful information about the ads served through Google Ads, including details about the ad campaigns, their content, and the target audience.

Using this data, you can get an overview of your competitors’ ads and better understand the trends and preferences of customers in your area. In this way, you will achieve an increase in efficiency and conversions.
The Google Ads Transparency Center therefore enables you to gain valuable insights that you can use when expanding your e-shop to new markets.

The competitor’s ads are “boned” for you by the Google Ads Transparency Center in every country . Source: Adstransparency.google.com

3. Professional Export Analyzes of Foreign Markets

As a Google Premier Partner and an exclusive guide to entering world markets, we offer you basic export analyzes for download. Our level of partnership with Google for international expansion ensures you’ll have the tools and know-how you need to reach millions of new customers immediately .

Analyzes of foreign markets for download


Our analyzes of foreign markets will show you where to start. If you need a deeper insight and professional opinion, do not hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to prepare a customized export analysis for you, help you choose target countries and plan your expansion down to the smallest detail.

4. ChatGPT Deep Prompting: Export and Expansion

Generative AI is becoming a regular part of business strategy planning life. We recommend that you also use it during expansion. Give it the most precise instructions possible, and then use the generated responses as a secondary source of inspiration for developing strategy.

Whether you’re asking about local marketing best practices, customer acquisition and retention strategies, conversion optimization, or improving the customer experience, always double-check all generative AI answers. We recommend tuning the prompts locally and focusing on the content of the vertical itself.

8 prompts worth trying when expanding

1. What are the biggest opportunities for the expansion of my e-shop selling "Product or vertical" to the "Target Country" market?

2. What new products, services or extensions of my offer could attract and retain customers during the expansion to the "Target Country" of my e-shop currently selling "Product or vertical"?

3. How can I strengthen my competitiveness and differentiate myself from other players on the "Target Country" market when expanding my e-shop selling "Product or vertical"?

4. Which marketing channels and tools on the "Target Country" market could be most effective in acquiring new customers and expanding awareness of my e-shop selling "Product or vertical?

5. What trends in technology and online shopping should I keep in mind today when expanding my e-shop selling "Product or vertical"?

6. What additional resources and capacities will I need when expanding my e-shop selling "Product or vertical"?

7. How can I effectively monitor and measure the success of the expansion to the "Target Country" of my e-shop selling "Product or vertical" and adapt based on the knowledge gained?"

8. What risks and obstacles can arise during the expansion of the "Target Country" of my e-shop selling "Product or vertical" and how can I develop strategies to handle them?

Evaluation of Own Readiness

After a proper input analysis and finding out the real possibilities of the input market, it is important to realistically assess the capabilities of your own team, available resources and technical readiness.

Can your team communicate effectively in a foreign language or handle customer support and returns processes? Have you factored all the costs associated with this growth into your budget?

Localization is not easy

In order to reach local customers and build the credibility of your brand, you need to localize the content of your e-shop. Here are some recommendations:

  • Content translation: Translate all content on your e-shop into the local language of the target market. Work with professional translators who were born in the country and have experience translating e-commerce content.
  • Customization of images and graphics: Think about cultural differences and adapt the graphics, images and design of your e-shop to match local preferences.
  • Payment and delivery options: Make sure your payment and delivery options are tailored to your target market. Local preferences and preferred payment and delivery methods may vary, so it’s important to localize these options.

Choosing a Country is Just the Beginning

Do not underestimate the choice of a suitable market. This is one of the most important decisions when expanding. At a minimum, we recommend that you consider consulting an expansion specialist. Thanks to it, you can save a considerable amount of time and money.

Thanks to the Dexfinity Editorial Staff for Creating This Article

Michal Valent specializes in SEO and content at Dexfinity. In addition to preparing keyword analyses, he also suggests topics and often edits the content structure.

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Michal Lichner

Michal Lichner
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Tomáš Karaba
Sales & Biz. Development
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Pavol Adamčák
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