Why online localisation is a little like the cakes at your local bakery!
WHAT IS WEBSITE LOCALISATION?
Website localisation (or localization) is a process whereby a website is built or adapted to suit a specific geographic area. If you think about this in real life terms with physical shops or business, it may help to make more sense of it.
As an example, let’s say a baker sets up a cake shop in Dublin. The owner speaks English, as most of her customers also do, and she bakes cakes that are suited to local tastes and contain ingredients she can source locally. Her business does very well and she decides to move to a sunny Spanish island and set up shop there instead, leaving someone else in charge of her Dublin business. She uses the same model. She speaks English, she bakes the same cakes. Though her business struggles. Why? Well because her customers speak Spanish, not English, her cakes don’t suit local preferences and tastes and some of her ingredients aren’t available locally, so she’s spending money importing them from other places. Lastly, she’s never changed the time on her watch, so she’s operating at Irish business hours and not taking the siesta and late meal times into account!
When it comes to website localisation, you need to take as many elements into consideration, though the specific ingredients and recipes may vary from business to business. But if you want to sell to a Spanish speaking market, you’ll need to speak their language. If you’re selling products, you’re going to need to be able to deliver products to them in a reasonable amount of time and at a reasonable cost. And you’ll need to be able to respond to orders and offer customer support at times that make sense to your new customers.
TRANSLATION SERVICES FOR GLOBAL SEO
Another elements that comes into play online is that most customers will find (or at least you hope they will) through search engines like Google. In each market, Google prioritises local results – websites offered in the native tongue and with elements that prove the site is local – such as integrated maps and local business directories pointing to or linking back to the site.
In order to make sure the language is local and also suited in tone to your target market, you’ll need to enlist the services of professional translators who also have a basic understanding of SEO or can take advice from your digital marketing consultant on the phrases that may need to be used.