What You Need to Know About Internationalization
The concept of venturing into new markets can send an adrenaline thrill down your spine as a business owner. Imagine the new countries, diverse markets, and cultures, new clients, and most importantly, increased sales for your business. Isn’t this every business owner’s dream? Though internationalization can come with incredible rewards, the process of taking a plunge into the untested international waters can at times prove intimidating.
There are numerous factors to consider before you go beyond your local borders. These include: taxes, language barrier, shipping, local taxation regimes, trade laws, and policies, customer representatives and sales agents, etc. so, from where do you begin?
The initial step is to take in a deep breath and relax. Indeed, there is no silver bullet method of getting rid of all the involved risks that accompany the process of internationalization. However, there are several things you can do to arm yourself against most of the potential risks, keeping them to a minimum. Below is some essential information you need to understand before venturing into the internationalization of your business.
Know Precisely What Internalization Is
Internalization can be referred to the process whereby a business makes sure that its web content, architecture, and mechanisms cater to various languages in addition to cultural conventions to come up with fully localized websites.
In essence, you are making your website functionality as well as your content management system globally, ready through the process of internationalization. Such a process has a high potential of tremendously enhancing your global customer experience.
Internationalization of websites primarily focuses on back-end applications as well as these content management systems (CMSs). The major objective is to provide support for multilingual online publishing procedures. This concept is fundamentally different from localization and translation. Nevertheless, it works hand in hand with these practices.
Do Not Ignore the Process of Translation
More than half of modern consumers prefer online shopping in their native languages. Almost a similar proportion of buyers feel more comfortable purchasing goods and services in their locale. Undertaking shopping in one’s native language is a lot easier, and a website that has been completely localized provides a feeling of trust. The buyers can see their local currency, local couriers, the local dialect. As such, potential customers are more willing to buy goods and services. Nearly 55 percent of consumers claim that accessing content that has been prepared in their native language is even more important compared to pricing. As a business, if your clientele is ready to pay higher prices for localized information, you also need to do the same.
For this reason, it is essential to search for the quality website localization service like translate.com/localization to get professionally translated content into the various native languages of the countries you are expanding the business. As getting a poorly done translation is even worse than not having any translation at all, it can turn away potential clients.
Make Sure That Your Branding & Marketing Has Been Localized
While undertaking localization, do not just assume that translating a few sections of your message is enough in promoting your deals and discounts in different countries. Sometimes formal branding can be efficient in one country but can fail in another. For this reason, you need to thoroughly do your homework on what works and what doesn’t work based on the country in which you are operating.
In each country, there are different factors that might be in play at any given time. Peak business seasons normally differ, holiday deals will, of course, be different, and different clients will also have varied expectations in terms of standards of services and quality of communication.
Native translation experts can assist a great deal when it comes to this process. It is best to keep this in mind while finalizing your plans for expanding abroad. You need to develop something that will be acceptable across different cultures. But most importantly, keep it simple and accessible.
Use Your Enterprise Resource Software to The Heavy Tasks
Enterprise resource planning refers to all the applications used by an organization in the management of daily business processes. These include project management, compliance, risk management, accounting, procurement, and supply chain activities. Never underestimate the effectiveness of a quality ERP. It needs to be able to handle most of your localization details on your behalf. Some of the methods through which it can achieve this feat is through providing separate language settings in addition to complying with local taxation rules, business regulations, and local rules. For this reason, it is crucial to go for software that provides support for your globalization ambitions.
Select an Appropriate Web Store for Your Internationalization
Some ERPs come with integrated web store platforms. These usually function from within the Enterprise resource planning application. This enables you to utilize every localization feature in your possession a lot more easily right from within your web store.
For instance, if you have indicated within your ERP that a customer is of Spanish origin, the integrated web store automatically displays a Spanish web interface immediately the customer logs in. Also, ensure that you select a web store application that offers different language packs that you can use in providing content for speakers of different languages.
Quality web platforms are usually able to handle most of the simple details without the need for human intervention. One practical example is the issue of time zones and the localization of configurations, e.g., the first day of the week. This can normally vary between Sunday and Monday depending on the country. In such cases, you must have a web store that can display the right language & currency simply by determining the IP address of a user and displaying the precise information.