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Written by Steven Bussey
on May 15, 2020

T

he global onset of the coronavirus and the start of the quarantine in early 2020 naturally led to a staggering surge in consumer purchasing online. The speed and magnitude of the mall and Main Street exodus to eCommerce during the worldwide lockdown has transformed reality for the global business sector and the internet is rapidly becoming the predominate system of commercial consumer resources. As a result, there is a far greater need for eCommerce website localization during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic than ever before.

 

How does localizing for global online consumers help people?

Never has localizing the online experience for customers in both domestic and international markets been a more pressing priority in eCommerce. The coronavirus is expected to persist as a severely disruptive problem through 2020 and potentially into mid-2021. Consumers' normal routines are being replaced with new and extreme supply access limitations, logistical complications and other obstacles.

These emergent conditions demand new and highly-responsive solutions that can promptly deliver additional resources for consumer goods and services to the world-wide population that has now moved online for virtual shopping, work, meetings, eLearning, entertainment, socializing, and even for graduating and getting married!

If little else is as clear during this time of so many uncertainties and troubling turns of circumstances in cities, regions and countries, it is certain that people need as much help as possible in understanding their options among what's currently available to them online in the various areas of their consumer needs.

This clarity further opens awareness of the serious need for organizations that provide goods and services to have an effective online presence. Properly localizing a commercial website means ensuring that customers can easily express their needs and preferences, and that the full range of available purchasing options is clearly explained in their own language and dialect. Product and service descriptions must provide pricing in the site visitor's own currency, and payment terms, customer service policies, and all other particulars must be clear and relatable. Ultimately, it is critical for commercial sites to have a strong capacity to communicate coherently and consistently with customers in combination with an efficient ordering and delivery system.

Of course, in order to help people make well-informed decisions, it's essential that they are provided with the means to communicate in their own language and in the manner of their own national, regional and local culture. So it's not surprising that many eCommerce companies are seeking to improve their online customer experience and their sites' general efficiency in facilitating shopping and sales transactions.

As uncertainties about the course of the pandemic continue to grow over the coming months, ensuring thorough localization of eCommerce site content for informing and educating a business's multilingual and multicultural consumer audience is a fundamental for reaching international target markets. That's because those markets are now in unprecedented need of access to expanded networks of commercial supply sources.

Naturally, businesses that reach out as a form of community service to engage and help people in their own languages, especially in this time of health and economic crisis, can realize significant revenue generating benefits and strengthen their strategic position for ensuring business continuity.

Urgent updates, of course, must be localized for each international information distribution area, to ensure clear and effective communications throughout all locations. Company-wide announcements should provide prompt information updates for customers, contractors and other involved parties, and allocation of essential resources should be simplified.

eCommerce is growing exponentially during the global lockdown

 

What the global shutdown means to business performance

With national and local economies shutting down worldwide, in an effort to mitigate the rampage of the COVID-19 pandemic through populations, individuals are cooperating in maintaining quarantines. This has caused a scarcity across the normally abundant local, national, and international range of commercial shopping opportunities consumers have for so long taken for granted.

In fact, many commercial and industrial subsectors have been adversely affected by the sudden and shocking blow of the economic constriction. Fortunately, providing a localized online customer experience that helps strengthen customer relationships is helping many businesses offset the loss of in-store shopping traffic and revenues.

That's because, to the greatest extent possible, the global population of consumers is adapting by moving online to seek out the goods and services they need. Businesses who make their products and services fully accessible to their waiting international and domestic markets through localization are helping their customers and their own bottom lines.

Online business performance is increasingly on the rise during these times

 

Growing an international customer account base

International customers need and expect to have the same amount and quality of information available to them that is provided for customers in the original language in which a product or service is offered. Online business sales and services, including product presentations, sales transaction processing, customer account management, financial services, healthcare management and other routine services, need to function smoothly and at more comprehensive levels than ever before.

Consumers need the brands they've come to rely on most to have up-to-date information during the pandemic. They also need introductions to new localized resources that are accessible online. Multilingual foreign-market consumers, of course, need information, even more quickly than domestic-market consumers, if their area is being more severely impacted by the pandemic.

When product and service consumers find eCommerce sites presenting smoothly localized services across all of a business's customer-facing functional operations, from login security to all the reaches of service modules through customer portals, they gain confidence in the dependability of a company to provide for their needs during this time that is otherwise fraught with unusual challenges.

Despite our separation, the internet is keeping us all connected

 

Public information outreach

It is essential to offer answers to common questions on web pages (perhaps by localizing videos or downloadable PDF features), as well as in social platform posts, and perhaps in external online ads. Site owners should provide updates for consumers regarding the company’s management during the pandemic, including addressing matters of availability of products and services, temporary changes in hours, closures and other questions about preparedness.

Customer support teams can become inundated during periods when supply chains are impacted, as they are during this current crisis. Phone and online support teams can become severely strained, often handling high call volumes while working short-handed. Ensure that multilingual support departments are as well-staffed as possible. Localize FAQ materials and self-service information resources and materials to significantly reduce customer support-center call and email traffic.

In addition to localizing management announcements to help mitigate the spread of the virus, consider adding localized statements about your business's charitable activities to let people know about your business's social consciousness. This kind of information sharing serves to inspire other businesses in and outside your industry as well as employees, customers and prospects.

Companies need to make sure now more than ever that they keep connected with their employees and clients

 

Quarantine drives global population online

Since the spread of COVID-19, people have been doing every imaginable activity online, including business communicating, classroom learning, socializing with friends and family, playing games, even conducting special events in the virtual gathering space. Of course, they're also habitually conducting as much of their shopping and other personal business online as possible. The overall lifestyle change in modern society due to the mobility limitations imposed by the quarantine has been dramatic.

Because the rate of online consumer purchasing has become so extremely accelerated since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, it's a crucial time for eCommerce sites to be made available for online customers in as many languages as necessary in order to reach their target audiences wherever and to whomever they are, and to begin building customer relationships. Now, more than ever before, people need as many online options as they can find.

The COVID-19 pandemic, for all it has cost the world and society at large, has nevertheless had the effect of generating countless beneficial opportunities for online providers to serve people's needs throughout the world and to grow their businesses through their initiatives to localize for more international markets.

Growth via eCommerce website localization is currently a key mode of business expansion in the global online market. Per the basic nature of communications and the global situation, localization is now an imperative for companies and other organizations who want: a) to help people during this challenging time and b) to participate in the currently vast business growth opportunities for online providers.

So, the importance of increasing accessibility to other market areas and cultures by localizing eCommerce websitesvideo, ad content, online advertising and social media material really cannot be overstated at this unprecedented time of shifting global consumer market economics.

The internet has become a necessity of day-to-day life. Don't let language stop you from connecting.

 

Andovar eCommerce site localization

We are a global media localization service provider. We help eCommerce companies, game developers, eLearning companies, software and app builders, HR and training services, MarCom companies, and other organizations by producing high-quality localization of content for their customers, viewers and employees throughout the world. It is our mission to provide seamless customized localization solutions that enable the growth of our B2B client companies.

The Andovar team includes 100 full-time production and management employees and 3,000+ translators located throughout the world. Our international headquarters is located in Singapore and we offer state-of-the-art localization production and sales facilities in Thailand, India, Columbia, China, the United States and Hungary. We provide turnkey localization, engineering, text and audio localization. Contact us anytime to arrange to speak to one of our localization project specialists about your unique needs for your eCommerce site.

Get in touch today to see how we can help you in these times

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