When creating a website, a company should think about their target audience in order to create the content that will get to their potential customers. One of the critical factors is the language for this content. With globalization, all companies willing to reach customers from around the world should invest in multilingual content. Research shows that even websites with their content in English should consider adding, at least, a second language option for users that speak Chinese, Spanish, or Portuguese. In order to help you to figure out which is the best language option for the content in your website, keep reading to find out about some stats and trends that might help you to decide to go for localization.
The latest report of Internet World Stats in June 2016, shows that Internet users whose native language is English account for only 26,3% of the world’s total. This means that 73,7% of users speak a language other than English. Chinese is the second language in the ranking, with 20% of the users. In terms of our goal of bringing you closer to Latin America, Spanish and Portuguese are in third and fifth place respectively. These numbers show some evidence regarding the importance of creating multiple language websites in your company, to reach potential customers from all around the world.
Another important point for companies is the user preferences when using Internet. A survey conducted by the Gallup Organization shows that 9 out of 10 persons rather use a website in their own language. However, they would accept to use an English version of the site when not available in their own language. Nobody wants to have their customers partially happy, offering them the second-best option. This behavior reinforces how important it is to offer a multilingual website.
Now that we know this, let’s talk about some options you have for giving your website’s visitors the experience in their own language:
- Mechanical translation: Is when you enable an automatic translation of your site in order to help the user to understand the information and facilitate the navigation. Our friends at Google offer this option, and even though some companies find it easier and more comfy, the truth is (and it is not because we are a translation studio ;), but because we’ve gone through it during our online lives) that mechanical translation will have errors and weird translations that can be confusing for the user.
- Human translation: Human translations are made by professional people that is committed to provide you with the best version of your content in the target language. This kind of translation (or localization to be more accurate) takes into consideration cultural backgrounds to get the best possible wording. So, although human translation has a higher cost, it is ideal for meeting your customer’s needs and to show you really care about them, not letting some kind of computer Tarzan to talk to them.
You can choose to translate the entire website into a second or third language or to just create some landing pages with the most important information for your Latin American prospects. Whenever you decide to give a step forward, just drop us a note ( :