In this day and age, many companies truly are global in nature. Even if you don’t have offices around the world, your business is still considered to be global if you attempt to reach out to potential customers in other countries. And every global business needs localization in order to be successful. Put very simply, “localization” in business means modifying your marketing efforts and your product or service so that it can be more easily understood and appreciated by people in different areas of the world. It’s important to take other cultures into consideration and make sure that the language and images you use are appropriate for all of your target markets. This applies to virtually everything related to your business – from advertising to packaging to your website to online marketing and more.
If you attempt to sell your product or service in countries other than your own, and you don’t bother with localization, a variety of negative results can occur. Your sales will decrease because potential customers won’t appreciate how they can benefit from your product/service. You may fail to meet certain regulatory requirements. Your website and your online marketing efforts may all be wasted if you use images, language, or colors that people in some areas of the world find offensive.
The first and most important aspect of localization is translation – making sure that your content is accurately translated. That content includes everything from instruction manuals to advertising to product packaging to social media marketing and more. An experienced translator can make sure that your language is suitable for the target audience, as well as ensuring that graphics and images are appropriate, date and phone number formats are correct, and mentions of currency are accurate.
Here are just some of the countless benefits of localization:
• Without localization, you could be alienating potential customers. Studies show that the vast majority of people will only purchase a product online if the website and associated advertising is presented in their native tongue.
• Localization allows your business to successfully compete in the global marketplace, where many other companies in your industry have no doubt already undergone localization.
• Customers are more likely to develop a loyalty to a company that makes the effort to localize in order to best serve those customers.
• Localization will allow your brand to expand and become a truly global presence.
• From a legal and/or regulatory point of view, ensuring that all required documents are accurately and precisely translated can avoid miscommunication and lack of compliance with laws and regulations – documents such as contracts, agreements, copyright notices, etc.
• Localization will open up new markets for your product or service, which often leads to unprecedented growth and increased sales.
Whether your company is already established and looking to expand into new markets, or a new company interested in seeking the broadest possible target audience, localization is essential in order to succeed in our modern global marketplace.