eCommerce gives local businesses the opportunity to sell to global customers, but that doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed a sale. Launching overseas isn’t exactly easy, even in an untapped market, so you’ll need to consider how you’ll remove localization barriers on your website.
What is Localization in eCommerce?
eCommerce localization is when brands take their existing content and personalize it for different markets. By localizing eCommerce, you make your website more accessible to buyers who may not speak your local language, use your currency, or recognize your web domain.
What are the Benefits of Localization in eCommerce?
While localizing your eCommerce site takes a lot of work, the benefits are worth it:
Increased Market Share
With a translated website, you gain access to more people who speak that language. This gives you a competitive advantage in local markets.
International Search Presence
Unless a non-English speaker is looking for an English site, they’ll default to a language they’re more familiar with. By translating your website, you’ll capitalize on foreign language search queries and thus, boost your local SEO.
Fewer Cart Abandonments
If you have a regionalized inventory, your customers won’t abandon their cart as often due to high shipping fees or currency confusion.
Digital personalization can increase customer satisfaction and conversion rates because shoppers are more engaged with your site. Plus, your customers will truly feel like your website caters to an international or global audience.
Companies that possess a deep localization framework grow faster than average because they’re able to market to foreign audiences more effectively.
A typical eCommerce localization strategy will include location-specific domains, currencies, payment methods, product pricing, languages, imagery, and customer support. Your US-based website should look completely different when a person with a German IP visits your site.
Keep in mind that you’ll only receive the benefits of localization if it’s done well. Use professional translators and cultural specialists when designing a website with localization features.
5 Tips on How to Localize an eCommerce Website
To thrive in a global marketplace, start localizing your eCommerce website, but be mindful not to stretch yourself too thin.
Have one demographic in mind when utilizing the following tips.
1. Do Market Research for Expansion
Disregarding market research is one of the biggest eCommerce mistakes you could ever make, as localization isn’t just about translating your content. You need to pay attention to cultural nuances, international trends, and customer feedback if you want to succeed on a global scale.
2. Display the Localized Site
Don’t expect your visitors to locate the localized version of your site by themselves because they’ll have a hard time doing that if they aren’t fluent in English. Instead, create a pop-up that’s triggered when a user with a foreign IP address or location visits your site for the first time.
3. Be Transparent With Item Fees
No one wants to pay unexpected shipping fees or duty, import, and export taxes. However, some sites expect foreign customers to pay an extra charge once the shipment is delivered. You should always disclose any extra costs upfront if you want to protect your brand’s reputation.
4. Localize All of Your Inventory
If you’re localizing your eCommerce site but shipment costs are too high for your customers, consider opening multiple fulfillment centers across the globe. Or, you could work with a third-party logistics company with international warehouses if you can’t purchase your own.
5. Test, Test, and Test Again
There is nothing more embarrassing than a poorly translated website. Not only does it make you look lazy, but it also sends the impression that you’re only interested in making a quick buck. That’s why it’s absolutely important that you test your website multiple times before going live.