Keeping costs low in a busy consumer space is important for businesses like online seller giZmoZ n gadgetZ. Its director Martin Goldsmith talks about how using World First has helped him rise above the crowd.
High Wycombe-based giZmoZ n gadgetZ is a retailer and wholesaler of small electrical accessories such as headphones, mobile phone accessories and chargers. Martin Goldsmith set up the business in 2012 and since then the firm has expanded beyond the UK, into France and Germany, using online marketplaces like Amazon to drive sales.
Here Martin talks about some of the lessons he has learned in the course of running and growing his business:
1. Small things can make a big difference
Because there are so many businesses selling small electrical items online we’re in a very competitive environment, so if I am able to reduce the fees associated with using a digital seller platform and also the fees associated with converting foreign currency – even by a couple of percent – that can make a positive difference to my margin.
2. You have to kiss a lot of frogs…
I researched and used a number of different currency brokers, but for a variety of reasons I moved away from each of them. I had a completely different experience with World First. I find them quick to respond, easy to use and they offer me a personal service. Any questions I have – large or small – I go to Tina, my account manager. She has been there for absolutely everything, sorted out my queries in no time, and has gone above and beyond the call of duty.
3. A great online currency broker can mean nice surprises
We recently became VAT-registered in France and Germany and needed to send money once a month to those countries. I emailed Tina to ask her how to do this. I was both happy and surprised when she responded by saying that she had already set it up!
4. How much forward contracts could help my business
While other currency brokers had mentioned forward contracts to me, none had spelled out the practical benefits to my business. World First explained how they work, and how they could help my business reduce the risk posed by exchange-rate fluctuations. They also pointed out some growth opportunities and introduced me to three new online marketplaces.
5. How much difference a day can make with the tax man
Whereas in the past it could take us around a week to get currency transferred, World First gets the funds across in a couple of days or the same day for some countries. This helps with cash flow. I also have to pay the French and German authorities regular VAT payments and if we miss our payment dates the business can face very heavy fines. Once, I even had to send payment to a government authority by a specific date. I transferred the money on the same day because I knew I could rely on World First to get it there.
6. I didn’t need all the answers to go for it…
If I were talking to someone that was thinking about setting up an online business my advice would be to ‘Just do it’. You won’t have all the answers when starting and you probably won’t have all the answers once you have finished, but you’ll find your way. You will constantly learn, develop and find better ways to work.