It’s no secret that, through technology, the world is a lot smaller than it used to be.
At one time, if you wanted to talk to someone across the globe, you had to go there in person or wait weeks for mail to arrive. Now, communication can happen instantly, allowing brands to enter new markets faster than ever before.
However, for a brand to thrive in a new country or region, it must appeal to the local population.
For example, if the company’s website is only in English, it won’t be accessible to most internet users outside of the U.S. and U.K. Not only that, but people prefer to view content that is localized for them.
Fortunately, localization services can bridge that gap and allow companies, both large and small, to capitalize on a global marketplace. Even if you’re not opening offices in new countries, these services can help you tap into online markets for eCommerce products and digital services.
So, let’s take a closer look at localization services and what they entail.
Download this post by entering your email below
What are Localization Services?
Localization services translate content to match the local language and culture.
They go beyond simple translation, helping brands customize websites and content pages so that they appeal to foreign visitors. Direct translations often miss subtle context cues and turns of phrases, making it harder for audiences to grasp the information being conveyed.
Overall, localization services aim to make your brand or business seem like it’s part of the local culture. This way, it’s easier to connect with new demographics while appealing to their unique preferences and needs.
What are the Five Types of Localization Services?
Given that the majority of consumers (75 percent) will choose products and content in their native languages, brands must invest in localization services if they want to compete in other countries.
Again, you don’t need to have physical offices in these places, but developing localized content can help you rank higher in search results and drive more traffic to your landing pages.
There are five primary types of localization services that can help your business succeed, so let’s break them down.
First and foremost, your website needs to be localized so you can appeal to visitors in each region.
Fortunately, technology can already identify a user’s location, so you can set up your site to automatically show the correct content when it detects a visitor from a specific area. Alternatively, you can create a drop-down menu that lets users choose a country and view the appropriate translated content.
Because localization services go beyond translation, you may decide to alter your website based on the visitor’s country of origin. While you can keep all of the same basic information, you might change elements like color schemes, imagery, and even your brand’s logo or slogan.
Overall, it’s up to you to decide how “local” you want to go with your website.
For example, if you’re trying to penetrate a specific market and establish your brand, you want to customize your site as much as possible. However, if you just want to make it easier for international customers to buy your products, your web pages may only need comprehensive translation and cultural updates.
Content marketing is one of the best ways to drive traffic to your site and increase your sales conversion rate. However, the type of content you publish to each region or country should be localized to suit the residents of that area.
Not only do people in different countries have unique tastes, but your content should reflect their backgrounds and cultures as well.
So, when trying to appeal to customers in new markets, you need to utilize content localization services. These service providers can help you with the following:
- Identifying which existing content pieces can be translated and updated for an international audience.
- Developing new content ideas for the region or country based on its culture and lifestyle.
- Creating or translating new pieces while making them attractive to readers in different markets.
- Verifying that no content will produce unintended adverse effects, such as offensive terminology or imagery.
Content localization services can be used for all kinds of online material, including infographics, ebooks, blog posts, video clips, and much more.
Again, if you’re trying to establish your brand in a specific country, it pays to invest heavily in these services. You may even want to hire a remote content creation team in each country to ensure a more streamlined production and publishing process.
Social media localization
While social media platforms are popular in the United States, they can be far more engaging and even essential in other countries.
For example, Facebook has lost a lot of market share in the U.S. but remains a staple in India, Brazil, and the Philippines. In some areas, Facebook operates as a de facto form of the internet, meaning that brands can get a lot of traction by posting localized material.
As with content localization, it’s imperative to have a team of local talent that can create and manage posts. Also, hiring remote workers who live in these countries allows you to tap into trending topics and news stories more efficiently. Since these workers are already connected to their communities, they can create and post relevant content to social media much faster than someone stateside.
Also, because social media operates 24/7, having localized staff means you don’t have to worry as much about delays caused by time zone differences. This discrepancy is even more problematic when you’re trying to post content to a country across the globe.
If your business uses documents as part of its sales or service process, you need to be sure to update these files and translate them into other languages.
Even though documents don’t have to be topical or culturally relevant, it’s still vital to hire competent localization services to ensure that both the text and intent are precisely translated.
Again, a one-to-one translation can negate much of the context of a word or sentence, so it’s best to have a native speaker translate the document, not just a computer program.
Document localization may also be impacted by local laws and regulations. For example, citizens of other countries may have to fill out different forms, or they might have unique types of ID.
If you don’t adjust your documents accordingly, you may wind up with compliance issues, leading to complex legal battles.
Customer service localization
While your website can provide a lot of information to customers who need answers, you must also have customer service reps who speak and understand the language.
While these reps don’t necessarily have to be local, you still need to consider elements like time zones and current events.
Some localization services may provide comprehensive customer support by connecting you to a network of remote workers. T
his way, you don’t have to hire people individually, nor do you need to manage a remote workforce. Overseas customers will still get the help they need while you save money on infrastructure and training.
Where to Hire Localization Services?
Fortunately, localization services are available online, and you can connect with companies that offer a wide array of localization options.
However, you may need to create a patchwork solution to ensure that you can produce content for specific locations and customers.
When it comes to content localization, you can outsource your materials to writers from around the world, thanks to WriterAccess.
Since this platform operates globally, brands can find native speakers who live in their home countries and produce high-quality, search-optimized content. WriterAccess gives you more control over your content without sacrificing the quality of localized pieces.
When comparing localization service providers, be sure to consider the following elements:
Which Markets Are You Focused On?
Knowing what countries or regions you want to break into helps you choose the right localization service. For example, if you’re trying to establish your brand in India, it makes sense to hire an India-based provider.
Does the Provider Have Experience In Your Industry?
One of the main challenges of localized content is that the provider not only needs to know how to translate information but also be well-versed in your industry.
For example, if you’re selling parts and equipment, a localization service needs to know how people use that equipment and how it works. Otherwise, any content they produce may be incorrect or misleading.
Do You Need Ongoing Support?
In some cases, you may just hire localization services to update your website and documents.
However, if you’re trying to break into a new market, you’ll need ongoing assistance to produce localized content and social media posts. So, make sure your service provider can facilitate that kind of long-term support.
Set Up Your Brand’s Localization For Success
As you can see, localization services are crucial for brands that want to expand into international markets.
Fortunately, Rock Content offers a wide array of services and tools that help localize your content and brand messaging to engage with customers, no matter their background or language.
When it comes to localized content, you need to get it right the first time! Don’t simply run your text through a translation program and hope for the best.
Rock Content and WriterAccess can help your business thrive in more countries, allowing you to expand faster and more efficiently than you ever thought possible.