Differences Between The USA And Europe For Business

As you grow your business and look towards exporting your products or services, you might be looking across the pond for new customers. Wherever you are based you need to be aware of certain important differences between the USA and Europe. Being able to communicate effectively with new customers from a different continent can make a great difference in the way your company grows and diversifies.


1. Neither is just one country

Over 50 countries make up Europe. Almost each of these have their unique language, culture, and way of doing business. Many Americans know this and act accordingly. However many European businesses who want to enter the profitable American market sometimes incorrectly treat it as just 1 country.

Yes, technically the USA is 1 country, however, each state is different. States haves their own rules, their own history, and their own way of doing things. It is important to treat each state as a separate country. You will find that even the languages vary across states. English is spoken almost everywhere, but Spanish, for example, is also a very common language, especially in states bordering Mexico.


2. Formalities could be important

When you look at the differences between the USA and Europe you will immediately notice the varied formalities. Whilst Americans tend to be less formal and focus on the bigger picture, Europeans generally prefer more formality and look for the details. When you are communicating with a new client from a new country it is always advisable to air on the side of caution. It is better to start off being formal and then adjust, depending on your customer’s approach.


3. Bill payments

There are considerable differences between the USA and Europe, particularly some countries in Europe, as far as bill payments are concerned. On this topic, different countries vary dramatically. I do not wish to generalise, however many people I do business with tell me stories of Italian or Greek businesses who do not pay their international suppliers until they are legally threatened.

The general advice, in this case, should apply when doing business with any new client in a new country. As a business owner, you need to take any reasonable precautions and carry out risk management on any new deals. You need to ensure that you have some sort of payment guarantee, such as with a letter of credit or insurance so that you protect your business.

8 thoughts on “Differences Between The USA And Europe For Business

  • May 29, 2017 at 12:45 pm

    Nice post. We friends have started a small business in US, its going well. Thanks to PSD Global for giving us important suggestion on Trade and Investment Promotion for our agencies and much more.

  • January 23, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    Pretty! This was an extremely wonderful article.
    Many thanks for providing these details.

  • August 24, 2016 at 10:56 pm

    It’s good to know and recognise these differences.

    Here in the UK, a lot of things are quite different to much of what I read that resonates more with the USA in parts and as a whole.

    I’ve just published a post that helps us in the UK regarding tax deductible expenses. That varies a lot, too around the world.

    Tweeting soon.


    • August 26, 2016 at 12:07 pm

      Thanks Nathan for your comment. Indeed the UK seems to be slowly becoming the 51st state. Be sure to subscribe for more articles.

Comments are closed.