10 Reasons to Translate Your Business Website

10 Reasons to Translate Your Business Website

You know what many successful companies have in common, regardless whether they have a dozen employees or thousands around the world?

They communicate in more than one language.

There are many examples of this, especially on the internet.

Here is a great example:

Alaska Airlines Spanish Language Website

You are probably wondering how you can make your business more successful, right?

One way to do it is to communicate with your customers through your website and do it in their language.

It seems like a daunting task, and it can be if not carefully planned and executed.

The good news is it’s now easier than ever before to translate business websites.

In this article, I won’t show you how. That will follow later.

What I will do is give you 10 solid reasons, backed by research and real business examples, on why you should translate your business website.

1. Grow revenue and increase profit

Without revenue and profit, a business cannot sustain itself.

If your company hit a revenue plateau, it’s time to think about how to continue growing your revenue.

Netflix did just that. According to a recent article in The New York Times by Emily Steel, Netflix will be enlarging its global footprint in the next two years.

Reed Hastings, CEO of Netflix, said that expanding the company globally is important since its growth is slowing down in the United States. Hastings believes that delivering its services in more countries will help Netflix reach its target revenue of $10 billion and allow the company to reinvest in its service.

Netflix U.S. Website

Your company may not be the size of Netflix, but it can still replicate its success.

You can start by thinking about translating your company’s website into another language to increase your revenue and profit.

2. Expand into new markets

If you are thinking about expanding your business into a new market, whether within the United States or abroad, consider translating your website as a part of your expansion strategy.

By translating your website into Spanish alone you will be able to cater to the over 37 million Spanish speakers in the United States.

And according to the Pew Research Center, that number is set to rise to as many as 43 million by 2020. Similar data provided by Pew Research indicates that more than three-in-four (78%) Latinos say they use the internet.

Internet Use Trends Among Latinos by Pew Research

If you want to go beyond the United States, consider expanding into Canada.

As part of your expansion plans you will be required to provide content in both English and French. Both are Canada’s official languages. With over 87% of Canadian households connected to the internet, Canada is a very lucrative market to consider expanding into.

3. Provide better customer experience

According to Common Sense Advisory, the first task of any visitor on a global website is to find a language he or she can read.

If they can’t understand the content of your website, they will most likely leave and go to your competitor.

Provide great customer experience by speaking your customer's language

Providing a great customer experience goes beyond translating content into another language. You have to make sure it’s done right.

This means that you should avoid plugins and services that translate your content automatically without human review. I recommend working with a company that specializes in translating content for multilingual websites.

4. Build trust and credibility of your brand

Shawn Hessinger, the editor of Small Business Trends, said that people instantly assess you and your business when they visit your website.

What this means for you is that if your visitors speak a language other than English, they will have a hard time understanding what you are selling.

You can gain their trust and build the credibility of your brand by offering them content in their language.

Build Trust with Your Customers

There are many other ways you can improve your credibility.

To find out what these are, check out the Stanford Guidelines for Web Credibility.

5. Comply with laws and regulations

You may have the best intentions to provide multilingual content on your website.

When you do, make sure you comply with all the local laws and regulations. Anthropologie, an American women’s clothing retailer, learned this when expanding into Quebec.

Anthropologie’s website was taken offline because it didn’t meet the linguistic regulations in Quebec. As a result, Anthropologie had to drive their Quebec-based website visitors to their brick-and-mortar store in Montreal.

Anthropologie Quebec Website

The lesson learned from this case is that you have to provide multilingual content on your website in certain markets and do it in a way that complies with laws and regulations.

6. Increase traffic to your website

Neil Patel increased search traffic to his website by 47% when he translated its content into 82 languages.

Even if you translate your website’s content into one language, such as Spanish, your traffic will increase. This is because people who speak Spanish use search engines such as Google.

It is tempting to use automated translation tools, like Google Translate, or translation plugins for WordPress.

I would advise against using such tools for your business website. The reason why is because these tools are not perfect and even one small translation mistake can be disastrous for your business.

Always opt for a professional translation for your business content.

7. Not all web content is in English

Did you know that as of March 2015, English made up only 55.5% of global website content?

According to W3Techs, the other languages that round up the top 10 are: Russian, German, Japanese, Spanish, French, Chinese, Portuguese, Italian and Polish.

W3Techs usage of content languages for websites

If you compare these numbers to the most spoken languages in the world, you will find that a very significant population is underserved.

This is especially true for Spanish.

In 2014, there were 392 million Spanish speakers in the world compared with only 4.6% websites in Spanish.

8. Get news coverage

If you build it, it does not necessarily mean they will come.

In other words, launching a website in another language does not automatically guarantee you will get results you want.

One way to get results is to publicize it.

Send out a press release announcing what you are doing and why. You may not get the national coverage that Netflix got from The New York Times, but you are likely to end up in your local business journal.

Translating your website can get you press coverage

Expanding your business into new markets and translating your website into another language can be a news-worthy event.

As a result, you will get more publicity for your business.

9. It’s easier to do it now than ever before

The world is more connected than ever before.

As of 2014, there were 968,882,453 websites on the internet and that number is increasing every second.

This growth can be attributed to many factors, and one such factor is that it’s easy to launch a website.

Total number of websites on the internet

It’s also easy to have your website translated. There are many reputable translation companies that specialize in this area.

The only thing you would need to do is figure out what languages you need your website translated into and why.

Once you do, get in touch with a translation company to start the discussion.

10. Beat your competitors to it

If you made it this far in the article, you are probably intrigued by the idea of translating your company’s website.

So, why not do it?

Do some research and see if your competitors have their websites translated.

If they don’t, beat them to it.

If they do, see how they did it and make yours better.

Conclusion

You’ve learned that there are many things successful companies have in common.

One of those things is having the ability to communicate with their customers in different languages.

You can communicate with your customers in their language through your website.

The best way to do it is to have your website professionally translated. And if you have a boss to convince, you now have 10 solid reasons to support your case.

What other reasons can you think of to translate your business website?

Share in the comments.

2 replies
  1. Beyond Translation
    Beyond Translation says:

    What a great article piece. I agree that is becoming more essential than ever to reach new target markets from around the world to increase your business potential. To be able to communicate well to your target audiences globally, you need to speak to them in their language. You need to be sensitive to the words they use and their cultures as well. This can only be done by translating your business website to different languages. And yes, you will surely gain more readers if people can read your business website in different languages.

    Reply

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