How to Start Exporting from India with No Experience?

Exporting goods from India can be an exciting venture, offering opportunities for growth and global reach. It may seem challenging if you are new to the world of exports. This post can be your guide on how to export from India, even if you don’t have any prior experience. It will walk you through the essential steps, from obtaining the documents for an IEC code to finding international markets for your products. Let’s embark on this exciting journey of export together.

Understand the Basics of Exporting 

Exporting involves selling goods or services produced in one country to another. It’s a fundamental aspect of international trade, allowing businesses to expand their market reach and profitability. This process demands understanding foreign market regulations, cultural nuances, shipping logistics, and potential tariffs. Companies typically adapt products to meet international standards and customer preferences. Exporting fosters economic growth, creates job opportunities, and encourages global business relationships, contributing significantly to a country’s economy. 

Obtain an IEC Code 

The Import Export Code (IEC) is your passport to international trade. You must obtain an IEC code from the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) to export from India. The application process is straightforward and can be done online. You’ll need essential documents such as your PAN card, address proof, and bank details. Once you have arranged all the documents for an IEC code and obtained it, you’re officially recognised as an exporter and can engage in international trade.

Identify Your Export Product= 

Selecting the right product for export is a critical decision. Those who successfully export from India generally start with a product they are passionate about and know about. Research the demand for your chosen product in international markets. Consider factors like competition, pricing, and potential barriers. Be open to adapting your product or targeting specific niches to meet the preferences of your target market.

Research International Markets

Conduct thorough market research to identify potential international markets for your product. Look for countries where there is a demand for what you’re offering. Explore factors like market size, consumer behaviour, and regulatory requirements. The Export Promotion Councils and Indian trade offices abroad can be valuable resources for market insights. Consider participating in international trade fairs and exhibitions to network and showcase your product.

Understand Export Documentation 

Exporting involves a range of documentation, and understanding these requirements is crucial. Some essential documents include the Proforma Invoice, Packing List, Bill of Lading/Airway Bill, and the Certificate of Origin. Familiarise yourself with INCO Terms to define responsibilities and costs between you and the buyer. Ensuring accurate and complete documentation is vital for a smooth export process. 

Establish a Reliable Supply Chain 

A reliable supply chain is the backbone of a successful export business. Source quality products, establish relationships with suppliers, and ensure efficient logistics. Choose a trusted freight forwarder or shipping company to handle transportation. Properly package your goods to prevent damage during transit. A well-structured supply chain ensures that your products reach international destinations on time and in good condition.

Compliance with Export Regulations  

Export regulations and customs requirements can vary from one country to another. Stay informed about the specific rules and regulations of your target markets. Ensure that your product complies with quality standards and safety regulations. Consider seeking legal and compliance advice to navigate the complexities of international trade law.


Starting an export business from India may seem challenging, especially if you have yet to gain experience. However, it’s entirely achievable with determination, research, and guidance. Arranging for necessary documents for an IEC code, obtaining one, understanding export documentation, and conducting thorough market research are essential steps. You can embark on a successful exporting journey by embracing the basics, building a reliable supply chain, and staying compliant with export regulations. Remember, starting small and learning from your experiences is a valuable strategy for long-term success in international trade.

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