The United Kingdom has signed a "continuity agreement" with Switzerland that establishes a continuity of trade practices between the two nations following Britain's exit from the EU. Before it officially steps away from the EU, the UK is attempting to establish more of these continuity agreements to avoid any major disruptions of trade. The UK is rushing to have more of these deals signed, as the author notes that there are 46 days left until Brexit is set to occur (as of 11 February). Once the UK officially leaves the EU, any existing trade deals governed by the EU simply dissolve for the UK.
This is problematic for the UK for several reasons. The UK is clearly very desperate to establish continuity agreements with key trading partners but is failing to do so. The UK is particularly concerned with establishing agreements with Asian partners Japan and South Korea. So far, Switzerland is the only "major" trading partner with whom the UK has established a trade partnership.
One of the primary reasons many "Brexiteers" pushed to leave the EU is because they believed that the UK would benefit from being able to establish its own trade deals with foreign nations. The EU does not allow its member states to do this. However, if the only trade deals the UK is currently seeking are continuity agreements with other countries, I wonder what else the UK seeks to gain by leaving the EU.
At its core, the EU is a global institution that is supposed to promote international cooperation, particularly with regards to issues such as trade. If the UK fails to establish any new beneficial trade agreements, they will at best simply adopt the same trade deals as they had initially in the EU, or resort to the trade policies set in place by the WTO. The second article I posted indicates that this would result in trade barriers being put up that provide a non-optimal outcome for the UK.