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E-commerce for exporters

E-commerce has become a vital channel for firms seeking to expand into international markets. Our selection of links, guides and books can help firms succeed in the digital marketplace.

Guides and publications

Exporting is GREAT
Free export guidance and support from the UK Government, including guidance in the following areas:

The Department for International Trade (DIT) also publishes several guides:

Introduction to the taxation of e-commerce
Overview of e-commerce taxation issues, including VAT, from the Out-Law website provided by law firm Pinsent Masons.

Atom Content Marketing guides


Open to export
An online community dedicated to helping UK business grow through export, supported by the UK government and business organisations. It provides export guides, webinars, case studies and the opportunity to post questions to exporters and other experts. The website contains many articles on e-commerce, providing advice on such issues as e-commerce marketplaces, setting up a bespoke e-commerce platform, international online marketing, payments in foreign currencies and order fulfillment.

DIT’s E-Exporting Programme
The programme helps UK companies new to, or inexperienced in, selling online in the global marketplace. It provides support in developing international online strategies, identifying new e-marketplaces, accessing better rates for specific e-marketplaces and access to free advice from the ‘E-Expertise Bank’ community of B2B and B2C service providers.

Articles and books in the Library collection

Selected article

The traps of selling goods online
(Tips and Advice - VAT, Vol.7. No.11. 6 October 2017)
Article identifies the traps that you need to be aware of when selling goods online

Selected books

Leading digital strategy: driving business growth through effective e-commerce
(Kogan Page, 2015)
Bones and Hammersley show how using e-commerce to engage with customers can open up new markets and deliver multi-channel success.

Building your business through export 
(Kogan Page, 2012)
This handbook for new exporters includes the chapter selling goods online which covers e-commerce regulations and key considerations when setting up e-commerce websites, e.g. making your website user friendly for foreign visitors, web analytics, search engine rankings, payment and avoiding online fraud.

The law and practice of international trade
(Sweet & Maxwell, 2012)
Includes a chapter on electronic commerce and electronic data interchange.

Go global: how to take your business to the world
(Brightword Publishing, 2010)
An easy, practical read aimed at both business owners considering exporting (but not knowing where to start) and business owners already making international sales and wanting to grow further.

Find more articles and books

To find out how you can borrow books from the Library please see our guide to book loans.

You can obtain copies of articles or extracts of books and reports through our document supply service.

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