When you’re building or growing your product-based business, the choice of where to manufacture your product is a big one. We’re so used to seeing products that are manufactured abroad that it can be easy to think that overseas is the best choice for your manufacturing operations.
However, that’s often not the case. Here are four big reasons why most product-based businesses are better off keeping their manufacturing in the UK:
Smaller carbon footprint
Consumers are becoming more and more conscious of the ethics and corporate responsibility of the businesses they buy from. From your carbon footprint to how you treat your employees, consumers want to see that companies understand the impact that their decisions have on society as a whole.
The further your product has to travel, the bigger your carbon footprint, and there are no carbon-neutral methods of transporting your products from your factories to your retail outlets or warehouse.
In 2015, shipping emissions made up approximately 13% of overall EU greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector. The EU is trying to reduce that, and the best way to reduce shipping emissions is to eliminate the need for international shipping by keeping your manufacturing as local as possible.
There’s also the issue of how an overseas manufacturer treats their workers. While many overseas manufacturers do maintain good working conditions for their employees, not all do. UK based workers benefit from robust legal protection for their health, safety, and general rights.
When you choose a manufacturer in the UK, you get a better opportunity to build good working relationships with them.
When face to face meetings are only a short journey away, it’s easier to collaborate, share ideas, and develop good communication with your manufacturers. With a high level of communication, it’s easier to identify and implement improvements to the product or the process and to quickly resolve any problems that might arise.
Manufacturing abroad can be cheaper if you’re producing at high volume and shipping the products in bulk. For small to medium-sized businesses, most of the cost savings from cheaper labour are swallowed up by the high costs of shipping the products back to the UK.
Then there’s the fact that 93% of consumers are willing to pay more for a product if it is made in Britain. While it might seem cheaper to manufacture overseas, consumers associate products manufactured overseas with lower quality. In the long run, that can affect how you price your product and what margins are achievable as well as how people perceive your brand.
Faster turnaround time
Longer shipping times don’t just mean inconvenience and extra cost for you. They could lose you business because your customers don’t want to wait. Today’s consumers are impatient. With same-day delivery services growing in popularity, people are less and less happy to wait weeks for delivery of a product.
Overseas manufacturing leaves you more exposed to delays arising from weather conditions and global incidents. These can delay the shipping of your products and lose you valuable sales and customers.
When it comes to manufacturing innovative technical products in the UK, Nexus offer an unrivalled service. Our friendly and experienced team of manufacturing, support, and project engineers take care of your entire product lifecycle. Our purpose-built, innovation centre, just north of Cambridge is eco-sustainable with a good transport network.
Why not come and visit us and see for yourself how Nexus can save your time and money, and reduce your carbon emissions.