The Perry expedition succeeded in opening Japan to trade with the USA. From Wikipedia we learn that around the same time the Russians also attempted the same thing (the Dutch already had some weak agreement with the Japanese).
I don't understand why they would consider using force in order to make the Japanese their partners (Perry had orders to use force if necessary)? Diplomacy, bribery, etc. sure, but risking a war seems not profitable. Especially, since that war would be waged against an isolated nation, i.e. there could be no guarantees as to what could be expected.
One of the reasons is stated as:
The Americans were also driven by concepts of Manifest Destiny and the desire to impose the benefits of western civilization and the Christian religion on what they perceived as “backwards” Asian nations.
Particularly in the case of the US this is an unsurprising reason, but also one specific umbrella for various hostile agendas (all throughout modern history the "benefits" of "Americans bringing democracy" are evident), so it's inconclusive.
The growing commerce between America and China, the presence of American whalers in waters offshore Japan, and the increasing monopolization of potential coaling stations by the British and French in Asia...
Again it is unclear to me how a potential conflict would help there, since it would disrupt trade, endanger the whalers and only worsen the position of the USA against the British and French.
The question is phrased for "nations" rather than USA intentionally, as I'm interested in other (general) motivations as well. The USA are only a prominent example, since they succeeded in forcing an agreement.