The biggest advantage of ecommerce business over traditional retail business is having international opportunities and extending your business’s boundaries to global markets. But the one obstacle that holds many ecommerce business owners to hold back is the language differences.
To put things into perspective, about 60% of shoppers rarely interact with ecommerce websites with English-only content and approximately 72% of shoppers prefer shopping in their native languages only.
Businesses that make efforts to dissolve language barriers between their customers and them win big time. Amazon, the ecommerce giant, does it beautifully. They have stores in over 71 languages and support 4970 translation combinations. They have realized the importance of ecommerce localization and are paving the way for the entire ecommerce industry.
Before exploring the benefits and best practices of ecommerce localization, let’s first understand what it means to localize your ecommerce store.
What is Ecommerce Localization?
Localization can be defined as the process of building something to the local preferences. In an ecommerce context, it means providing international shoppers a shopping experience that isn’t too different from their regular native experience.
The extent of localizing your estore shouldn’t be limited to just making your online shopping services available to the international audience. You should make efforts to create a unique online shopping experience for your shoppers in the language they are comfortable with.
Localization is one of the most crucial factors, after full-proof eCommerce fulfillment, for ecommerce businesses to achieve success in their feat of expanding their businesses to international waters.
It is quite easy to mistake localization with translating your estore to the native language but the matter of fact is that localization goes much deeper. The translation is a big part of localization, true, but localizing your estore means taking cultural context, time, dates, and other nuances of the language into consideration. The aim of localization is to make the shopper from the targeted country, city, or region feel like the estore and customer experience is crafted specifically for them.
Ecommerce localization is among the best ways to authenticate your international presence and bond with your target audience. There are many other benefits of ecommerce localization which we are going to explore next.
3 Benefits of Ecommerce Localization
- Better customer service
The quality of customer service is becoming a major differentiator for successful businesses and applies to the ecommerce industry as well. In a digital era where people are vocalizing their experience out in the public, providing better customer service than your competitors will gain you effective word-of-mouth publicity.
Localizing your product descriptions, FAQs, knowledge bases, reviews, and support chatbots is a great way to provide the right customer service and even improve your ecommerce site’s search engine rankings. Your shoppers will have no misunderstandings in understanding your products and reading reviews in their local language with proper context will help them trust the genuineness of your brand.
- Better connect with your audience
According to an EU survey, 9 out of 10 shoppers prefer interacting with websites in their language.
Reaching an audience is easier than retaining them and localization boosts your overall chances of customer retention. The reason being your customers can connect with your content and brand which means they will keep coming back.
The more efforts you make to understand your global audience, the better you will be able to localize your brand and thereby build a better connection with your audience.
- Increased revenue
The third benefit is the cumulative effect of the first two benefits. With better customer service, connection, and retention rate, you are bound to increase your bottom line. Moreover, your customers’ lifetime value also increases as localization directly impacts the customer retention rate.
Once you have dissolved the language barriers, you can realize the true potential of making your business a global sensation.
To practice ecommerce localization, here are tips and best practices from industry experts.
3 Best Practices of Ecommerce Localization to Localize Your Shoppers’ Buying Experience
- Pay attention to local rules
Knowing the local rules for minor details like traditional order of the names, level of formality, the number of names and surnames your customer might have, etc. will earn you brownie points with your customers. Imagine your customers logging into your website and they are addressed in their native language and level of formality.
Such details will definitely make your customers feel right at home with your brand and soon you can become the local brand that everyone talks about.
- Invest in hiring a translation firm
If you are doing something, do it the right way. Hire a local translation firm to help you understand the cultural contexts, semantics, linguistic nuances, colloquialisms, and maybe phonological awareness in case you plan on deploying a shopping assistant in your estore.
Poor translation of content is one of the biggest mistakes you can make while putting the wheels in motion for the localization of your estore. So, make sure you hire a translation firm that has specialization in the market you are planning to target.
- Take local laws and regulations into consideration
When you want to do business in another country, you will have to abide by their national and local laws. These laws can impact your website development and localization efforts.
The ingredients of an ideal private policy:
- An introduction of the organization
- The type of data you are going to collect and why you are collecting it
- The methods you are using to collect the data
- How and where will you store the data
Our readers found this helpful: Check out WebsitePolicies’ list of the privacy laws in different countries
Ecommerce businesses have saturated the local markets and the next and necessary step for them is to go global. To remain competitive and have a shot at succeeding in the global markets, they need to pay attention to localization to create a better customer experience. As a result, they can expect sustainable sales growth and better market share.
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