International exporters need the services of banks or financial institutions at many stages of their trading business. They need loan to help with initial setup, they need financing for production phase, and they need the services of banks to make or receive payments (letter of credit, wire transfer, etc), they can avail lots of other services like online banking, small business loans, credit cards, etc. When deciding on your bank you should consider following points carefully, because you can’t keep changing your bank often.
Interest Rates and Service Fee:
Normally, there’s not much difference between interest rates offered by various banks operating in the same market and circumstances, mainly because of cut throat competition. However, that doesn’t mean you should completely ignore the small differences at hand. Similarly, banks charge different fees for different services, if you have a clear idea of the services you are going to avail, you can easily decide on the most suitable bank. Banks have to rely on these service charges and fees for their profits, but you must make sure that you are not getting ripped off by your personal bank.
Repute & History:
A well reputed bank of good standing will also speak for your business credibility at international export, so you better go for some bank, which is highly regarded among business circles. If you are choosing a bank for long term relations, you should go through its business history, past performance and achievements. Another question to go over is how financially strong that bank is, especially after we have seen more than 15 US banks failures in first three months of 2009. Just because they deal in money, doesn’t mean they’d never run out of it.
Customer Relations & Customer Service:
Good banker-customer relations are a result of mutual understanding and collaboration. Bank staff normally consists of well mannered and courteous individuals; still some banks go that extra mile to please their customers and establish long term relationships. Customer service can slightly vary on branch to branch basis as well. Don’t get overwhelmed by the politeness and the display of utmost sincerity when going through the procedures of opening an account, instead you should talk to some existing customers to make sure they are satisfied with the banking services and the behavior of staff.
In addition to the points described above, you can look for the quality of products and services offered by the bank.