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Tips for Success in the German Market:

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Thim Werner

Thim Werner

Germany Business Expert

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Tips for Success in the German Market:

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Avoiding Pitfalls and Understanding German Consumer Needs

INTRODUCTION: Learning from the mistakes of others

Every business wants to succeed but some do not manage to in Germany. Why is that? Even giant international companies sometimes get it wrong. Let’s look at some of the pitfalls of an American company whose U.S. standing is strong but nonetheless failed to make it work in Germany: Walmart. What happened and why?

BUSINESS MODEL ANALYSIS: In-depth look at the target consumers and the competition

Firstly, understanding the German business model is key. What exactly does the German consumer want? That question must be analyzed, studied, and implemented carefully. Focusing solely on low, competitive prices, which is Walmart’s main business strategy, is not going to attract German buyers in droves. Especially when the competition, such as Aldi and Lidl, already have a strong loyal consumer base. Pricing is crucial indeed, but quality and variety are also imperative for success. Knowing and understanding the competition is key. Our market research team has proven itself to be first class in setting up this first and foremost crucial step of entering the German business market. We are the professionals who know how to get the job done with credentials to prove it.

LAWS OF THE LAND: Efficiently navigating the unavoidable bureaucracy

Secondly, German commercial and labor laws are extremely complex and extensive, not to mention that the trade unions are strong and highly respected. There is not a hire and fire culture in Germany. Also, Walmart’s stateside practice of price dumping was contested in the German high court, and they lost. Not understanding the extensive labor practices and assuming things are just like back home will lead to legal problems and failure in the end.

BUSINESS CULTURE: Comprehending the dos and don’ts

Thirdly, the Walmart management style and U.S versus German cultural differences were incompatible. Being part of a “big, happy family” will not cross over in Germany. Team building and teamwork are also two critical methods here in Germany but knowing what is acceptable and how to implement it in a German style is imperative. Furthermore, employer expectations are vastly different when comparing the two countries. There is a stricter work-life balance in Germany that must be respected. A positive working environment between management and staff can be established once all these unknowns are understood. We here at BD Consultancy know German business culture like the back of our hand and will guide your international company in steering through this important and critical aspect of your enterprise.

CONCLUSION: bdg Consulting GmbH is your one-stop partner for success in Germany

Germany is open for business and international companies are flocking to Germany. Despite the COVID pandemic, BREXIT, ongoing wars, and other setbacks, Germany is growing strongly in attracting global, international businesses to set up shop here. bdg Consulting GmbH knows what foreign companies who want to enter the German market should be made aware of. We help to make your business a success because we are experts in the German market. A personalized consultancy is key, and we are here to deliver on that promise of making your enterprise flourish in Germany.

Written by Thim Werner, Founder and MD of bdg Consulting GmbH

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