6 Do’s and Dont’s for Effective Website Localization

Learn the most important elements for effective website localization, which is key for SEO, brand consistency, and much more…

If your business operates globally, website localization should be an important part of your business plan. More than 70% of consumers say they are more likely to buy a product if website information is in their language, and 56.2% say that they are willing to pay more if the page gives them information in their language.

6 Do’s and Dont’s for Effective Website Localization

While most businesses may be aware of the benefits of website localization, many fall short in their attempts to develop an effective localization strategy and enlist the right marketing translation services. Here are a few tips for businesses that want to get the most out of their website localization.

  1. Consider Technical Limitations. When you deal with audiences in the United States, technical limitations are rarely an issue. However, there are still places where high-speed internet is considered a luxury, if it’s even available at all. If you are localizing for a region where internet speeds are slow, you may want to reconsider some of the multimedia elements that may be available on the English-language version of your website. Elements like HD video and audio can slow down your site’s load time, and if you’re expanding to a place where internet is slow, user experience could be negatively impacted.
  2. Localize Your Entire Website. Localization is not something that your company can do halfway. Some businesses just design a localized homepage for different countries while leaving the rest of the site in the source language. Consider what happens if visitors go to your website expecting a fully localized experience. When they find that there isn’t one, chances are high that these potential customers will instead look for a competitor that offers a better experience for people in that region.
  3. Account for Cultural Context. The small details often get lost in translation. In the process of localizing your website, you want to do more than just make sure it’s in the correct language. You also want to take steps to ensure that your message remains culturally appropriate. Avoid using turns of phrase and buzzwords that might not translate well into other languages. Try to gain a deeper understanding of the types of messaging and language that will resonate well with the target audience.
  4. Localize Your SEO. For many businesses, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plays an important role in helping consumers find their website. While you may already have an SEO strategy developed for the English-language version of your website, it’s equally important to understand that SEO is something that doesn’t translate directly between languages. People have different search behaviors in different regions, which means that each community uses its own distinct search terms when looking for things online. Try to build your localized pages around search terms that are relevant for the intended audience.
  5. Consistency Across All Online Assets. Consistency is important for companies that are trying to build brand awareness and create a recognizable identity abroad. When you localize for a region, you want all of the assets that serve that area to reflect your unique brand identity. Whether that’s a website, an app, your social media accounts, email campaigns, or printed materials, you want to try to maintain the same tone, style, and design across all of your branded content.

Don’t Get Cheap on Translations 

The quality of your translations will be critical for the success of your localization efforts. It can be tempting to try and cut costs by using something like Machine Translations or by hiring the cheapest translation service.

One thing you have to realize is that the quality of your translations will say a lot about your brand. Hiring a professional Language Service Provider will ensure that you get accurate translations that come across naturally to your target audience.

Rachel Wheeler

Rachel is a specialist in translation for websites and outreach via social media.