When was the last time you went on a vacation? Did you fly or drive? Did you book a hotel? Rent a car? Make reservations at a restaurant? Plan for events and activities? What language did you use?
You probably don’t even think about it when you are making travel plans, but you naturally want to look at things in your own language—even if you are traveling to a place where your language is uncommon. If you are a speaker of English, French, Chinese, Spanish, or some of the other widely-spoken languages across the world, you probably have access to any tourism site in your preferred language. But what if you speak Azerbaijani or Bosnian or any of the thousands of languages in the world that aren’t easily accessible?
Think back to a time when you bought something online, anything really, from a foreign country. If you bought a videogame from Japan, did you shop in Japanese? Maybe you had some fine wine and cheese shipped from France, but you probably didn’t read about it in French. In fact, these options probably didn’t even appear; if you type something into a search engine in English, your results will probably come back in English. If your search does result in another language, do you copy and paste that material into Google Translate? Or do more research to find out how to translate the page? Or do you just click the back button and try your search again?
Is the "world-wide-web" really accessible to the world? Statistics show that people spend more time on websites in their preferred language, and are more likely to buy a product in their own language. In fact, this Common Sense Advisory survey showed that more than half of customers said that they cared more about language than price! More than 40% of the people surveyed said they never purchase products in other languages.
Think about those numbers for a minute here. That means that if you aren’t translating your website, you’re missing out on the possibility of doubling your customers. There is no knowing how many people have clicked on your website or product, only to click back after realizing their language wasn’t available.
Tourism, travel, and hospitality businesses have the most obvious needs for translation. The U.S. is a tourist destination, but even Disney World only offers 5 languages (Portuguese, Spanish, French, Japanese, and 3 dialects of English) on their website! How many possible tourists are they losing from India, China, Eastern Europe, or the Middle East? And the same goes for products, services, apps, and blogs. The more languages you have available, the more people have the ability to reach. It’s simple math.
And here at Lionbridge onDemand, we have technology to help simplify your website translation needs. Our Translation Management Proxy allows for content on your website to be automatically translated into the languages of your choice, and then layers the translations over your existing web page, graphics and links. This allows your customers to easily click on their desired language, and the proxy translates and localizes the content for them.
Don’t lose half of your customers because of a language barrier. Watch this customer testimonial about Lionbridge Proxy, then come over to Lionbridge onDemand and open your website to the world of customers.
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