Economies, political decisions and cultures around the world are so intertwined today, from knowing the latest about the Tokyo Stock Exchange, political decision-making in the EU, to the U.S. employment rate. We simply cannot ignore the best means we have to introduce ourselves to the world: The Internet.
Now it really is an information superhighway, as Al Gore called it one day. Internet enables us to keep abreast of events, news and opportunities globally. Geographical boundaries have disappeared. Gradually, the meaning of national markets also fades away. We live and work for a world economy. According to the information that statistical services provide, the companies that have weathered the crisis better are the ones that are most internationalized and are less dependent on local markets. For instance, the Spanish economic recovery has been accompanied by a boom in exports according to reports by The Wall Street Journal, which in turn has increased a number of multilingual websites in Spain.
Translation for international business
To do business internationally, a professional translation or language consulting service are essential. It is not just about translating, but about providing information and international experience to the business, showing knowledge of the culture youre targeting. We can start a business or an export service, but without document versions in the languages of the markets that we are targeting and regular publications, our promotional opportunities are few. It is no longer about attending fairs and congresses but about doing it selectively and promoting our business on the Internet constantly.
Having a multilingual website is a profitable investment, a crucial one to address the current global market for many reasons:
• Optimum Business Image: Offering information on a website in the languages of our customers shows our interest in and awareness (and respect for, according to some cultures) about the needs of customers and users. We shall be perceived as a serious, communicative, and post-sales servicing focused company. In one word, an established company. This will help us gain credibility at the marketplace.
• Reduction of functional costs: Any commercial transaction necessarily involves an information exchange that may well serve as data base or knowledge for other potential users. Adding this information in other languages to the website and turning our website to an information point will reduce our management time – of particular interest to those responsible for Customer Service and Technical Assistance or business managers, who will now have an additional information and sales tool.
• More Sales Opportunities: Understanding the benefits of a product or service over another is a requirement in the sales process. Nobody will buy anything unless they know what it is useful for. A good number of studies show that people are more likely to buy on websites where they find information in their own language. According to Internet World Stats, the percentage of Internet users who use Spanish as their first language is about 10%, which makes it the 3rd globally most important language on the Internet. Therefore, if a website is only available in one language, we are losing the opportunity to communicate and reach out to the remaining 90% of customers. A Latin American Spanish translation of your content would increase visibility by 10% as Spanish speakers use keywords in their language to search. No company would like to be missing an opportunity to reach 10% more.
• More dissemination, more information: If we estimate that those using Spanish as the only language of communication amounts to 500 million people, we could add another 600 million people having our website available in English. Almost another 150 million adding Russian, and 1500 more with Chinese. Let us add over 130 million more with French (Europe, Canada, Africa) and a similar figure if we added Portuguese. Japan is an affluent market with some 130 million people. With a small investment in translation into 4 or 5 languages we can make our services and products available to more than 3,500 million people.
• Important: Best search engine ranking: A greater number of languages means more content, and therefore search engines allocate a better ranking to multilingual websites, since translations are not considered by search engines as duplicate content.