How do you feel when you sit down on your sofa in the evening?
Relaxed, safe, and comfortable (hopefully).
What do you want your clients to experience when they use your website?
How should they feel in those moments where they’re making important buying decisions?
Also relaxed, safe, and comfortable, right?
One of the most effective ways to create an atmosphere which will put your potential clients at ease is to speak to them in their language.
A 2020 study by Nimdzi investigated the relationship between language and buying behaviour.
It found that 9 out of 10 users will ignore your product if it's not in their native language.
Does this statistic surprise you? It doesn't surprise me.
Your website needs to feellike a safe and comfortable sofa. If a website is poorly written and badly localised (adapted to the local language and culture in the target market) you will lose potential clients.
There are an estimated 400 million English native speakers worldwide, (and a further 1 billion who speak it as a second language), so that's a pretty big market you could be missing out on.
If your business wants to attract customers from the English-speaking market, then I can help.
Why shoudn't I just use a free, online tranlsation tool?
Any online tool can translate your website or marketing materials. Perhaps you'd ask your employee who was top of his English class to do it. Or maybe you'd even do it yourself (you don't have the time for that, do you?). But think about this: phrases that work in German cannot be directly translated into English. Likewise, you could be missing out on wonderful English features which will impress your clients. And that's before you even get started on the potential issues in communication which arise from bad translations. More importantly, how can you be sure that your English website is appropriate for an Anglo market and business culture? At the end of the day you have to speak your customer's language.
This is where localisation comes in
What is localisation?
Localisation goes one step beyond translation.
It refines a website in terms of the culture, language, and structure.
What is its purpose?
Localisation ensures that there are no literal translations (like what an online tool might give you). Therefore it makes your website culturally relevant. The user feels like your website has been customised for them by taking into account elements like language and regionalisms, cultural elements (e.g. date and time format, units of measure, local holidays), transactional elements (currency, payment methods, addresses), local communication (like phone numbers, legal notices), and so on.
What advantages does it have for you and your business?
A great advantage of localisation is that it builds trust between the user and your business. It makes the user feel like the site has been customised for them, and that you understand their needs. It drives engagement and is generally an investment in your gobal business.
Let me give you some examples
This first example happened to me very recently. I wanted to purchase something from an American website and have this product delivered within America. However, once I began entering my billing information, I realised that there was no option to enter the address details of credit cards registered outside of the United States. And so I left the website (feeling annoyed), and they lost a customer. How could they have made my user experience better (and won a customer)? By considering that there might be customers outside of the U.S. wanting to buy their products and programming the payment page to allow users from abroad to enter their billing details accurately.
Maybe you already spotted that I write the word 'localisation' following British spelling rules (Hint: that's because I'm British). However, if I knew I was writing this for a purely American audience, I would spell it like so: 'localization'.
If you wanted your expanding business to target an American market, I would make sure that your date format went MONTH/DAY/YEAR. If you wanted to expand into the European market, your date formats should be DAY/MONTH/YEAR. It's these little things that make a user feel at home.
Smart business owners know the importance of English if they want to expand their business onto the international market. Having an English website will increase a business's potential client base, and that's what you want, right?
Hire someone who can properly translate your text into fluent and clear English and localise your website - it will impress everyone who reads it.