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Visit markets

Visit markets

Your checklist

Create a market visit plan and set clear objectives for your trip

Market visits to target EU markets allow you to develop a better understanding of each market and the opportunities for your company.

A properly planned market visit can help you:

  • Validate your desk research
  • Allow you to identify and meet prospective export partners
  • Help you decide on the best route into your preferred market

If you're planning to undertake a EU market visit, you should ideally start to plan for the visit at least two months ahead, and set clear objectives for what you want to achieve. 

Every year Scottish Development International (SDI) and the Department for International Trade (DIT) organise market visits, learning journeys and trade missions to EU markets.

Alternatively, you may wish to undertake your own one. However you choose to visit the market, it's important you plan, budget and set clear objectives for the visit.

Take the time to prepare for your market visit

If you've not visited the individual EU market before, take the time to learn a little about the culture and how business is conducted in the market.

Basic market information on each EU market is readily available through market profile reports, which you can access through our free market research service. 

Think through what you want to achieve from the visit, who you want to meet etc, and then set up appointments in advance.

Make sure you plan and schedule to accommodate each meeting, and give yourself enough time between appointments.

If you're intending to use the market visit to identify and meet prospective export partners such as agents and distributors, then take the time to prepare your checklist. Have key questions ready for each meeting to help you identify the right export partner for each market. 

Also, think through your product or service proposition for the market so you can clearly and easily set out the Unique Selling Proposition (USP) to prospective export partners or buyers – your elevator pitch.

Finally, ensure you have sufficient marketing material and business cards for the meetings you've planned.  

Create an appointment schedule and check list

Ideally prior to your market visit you will have arranged the key appointments you wish to undertake, and know when you are meeting, how long each one will take and its objectives. 

Be familiar with distances and timings in advance of your market visit, and also the business culture in some EU markets. 

Your checklist should capture:

  • Key questions you want to find out from each meeting to assist in your export planning or pricing or the appointment of an in-market representative
  • Key points you want to get across at each meeting in terms of your company, and product or service information, that will make you stand out in the market

Ensure you allow time to follow up each market visit meeting

Make sure you follow up each meeting – ideally make a quick note of any specific actions you wish to progress.

Ensure you make the effort to get in touch with each contact you've made, thanking them for the meeting and providing any additional information or confirming any key points within 48 hours of each meeting. 

On your return from the market visit take the time to ensure you evaluate how successful the visit has been.

Create a to-do list of any further follow up actions and assess what you've found out from your market visit to assist you in your export planning. 

Get the right support and advice

If you're planning on visiting the EU on business, then get in touch with one of our export advisers who will guide you through support available to help you make the most of your trip.

Contact us

Ask our experts about preparing an export plan.


All information provided on this web page is for general guidance only. The contents of this guide have been provided by our training partners, Upper Quartile. Upper Quartile is not affiliated with any of the third parties or listings represented on our website. Third party listings are drawn from public domain and industry body data sources. Due diligence on a given third party or listing remains the exclusive responsibility of the end user. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the details represented, Upper Quartile and Scottish Enterprise cannot endorse, recommend or accept responsibility for any transactions conducted between the user and a given third party or listing provided on this web page.