Exploring the Challenges of Translation in E-Commerce

July 17, 2023

Are you facing language barriers, cultural nuances, and localization challenges in your e-commerce business? In recent years, companies have been selling products across borders to reach global audiences, but with this impressive growth also comes the unique challenges of translation that can impact customer satisfaction. But how can companies best overcome potential hurdles with e-commerce translation?

The impact of translation in e-commerce

Accurate and effective marketing content and product descriptions are essential for attracting your target audience and increasing sales. At the same time, it is also crucial to provide high-quality customer support in your customers’ native language, which can improve customer satisfaction and retention rates. 

Additionally, implementing effective SEO strategies in multiple languages can boost the visibility of your e-commerce website on search engine results pages (SERPs), reaching a global audience and driving sales. To achieve these outcomes, investing in high-quality translation services and localization processes is paramount — it ensures that you will see a positive impact on your e-commerce company’s growth and success.

Unique translation challenges of e-commerce companies

Due to your global reach and complex structures, you need to navigate through various challenges that are unique to e-commerce such as linguistics, SEO, multilingual support, and scalability. The requirements may not always be clear or straightforward, which can cause confusion and difficulties in managing multiple translations. But in order to get the best ROI, businesses must focus on identifying and efficiently overcoming these challenges.

Linguistic challenges for e-commerce translation

First and foremost, a business’ website needs to be translated into multiple languages while taking cultural nuances, idioms, and colloquialisms into account. It is essential to localize your content to ensure that your products are marketed appropriately to each target market. 

However, managing multiple languages can present technical difficulties in terms of content management and design. Therefore, a business needs to find the right solutions to tackle these challenges effectively and ensure that a website’s translation meets the high standards that global audiences expect.

In fact, by using high-quality translation, Panasonic achieved remarkable results with service levels doubled and a 100% improvement in overall performance. Net Promoter Score (NPS) remained consistently high, support costs in five languages decreased by 60%, and training costs in Sweden reduced.

SEO in e-commerce website translation

Incorporating precise search engine optimization (SEO) strategies in multiple languages is essential for a website’s translation. With an efficient translation process, companies can stay ahead of the competition by investing in keyword research, local search trends, and market analysis. 

This will help make your products and services visible across different regions, and ensure that you reach your desired audience effectively – ultimately leading to increased traffic, higher conversion rates, and greater profitability.

Customer support for multilingual e-commerce sites

When it comes to operating a multilingual e-commerce site, it’s important to prioritize effective customer support in multiple languages to ensure customer satisfaction and promote loyalty. This requires working with translation agencies and service providers who employ native language speakers that can provide exceptional customer service. 

In addition to having skilled human translators, an efficient translation process should also leverage advanced technologies and workflows to quickly and accurately integrate translated content into your e-commerce platform, improve communication and streamline the customer experience. With an investment in multilingual customer support, your business can set itself apart from competitors, build stronger relationships with customers, and achieve greater long-term success.

For example, by implementing translation solutions that utilized real-time data, optimized workflows, and increased automation, Photobox transformed its multilingual e-commerce support and led to improved customer experiences and reduced costs.

Scalability in e-commerce translation

Top-tier translation is all but required in e-commerce scalability because expanding into new markets or optimizing multilingual operations requires the ability to communicate effectively with customers in their language and provide on-brand messaging that resonates. Failure to do so can result in customer frustration, low engagement, and lost sales.

Translation services are therefore vital to ensure that you can maintain consistent and high-quality customer service across different languages and cultures. Additionally, using translation services can help increase reach and visibility in new markets by providing access to a broader audience, which is essential for scalability. For instance, translation helped Farfetch achieve increased customer satisfaction, satisfaction, higher productivity, reduced recruiting costs, and scalable operations in niche languages.

How to rise to the challenge of e-commerce translation

If you’re facing challenges with e-commerce translation, there are several key factors to consider. 

First, selecting the best translation strategy for your unique needs is critical, and that strategy may involve investing in automation, machine translation, and glossaries. This is where scalable and accurate translation solutions for e-commerce businesses such as Unbabel’s come into play.

Localization is another critical consideration in e-commerce translation that extends beyond language to include cultural nuances and idioms. In addition to leveraging technologies, it’s essential to work with human translators and linguists to ensure high-quality translations and a consistent user experience across all of your e-commerce sites. 

Lastly, implementing efficient translation workflows for large translation projects is equally important. By investing in translation technologies and workflows that account for cultural and linguistic diversity, you can overcome the challenges of e-commerce translation and expand your business globally with confidence. Platforms like Unbabel offer specialized e-commerce translation solutions that address these specific challenges, providing accurate and efficient translations tailored to your needs.

Solving your e-commerce translation challenges with Unbabel

Unbabel’s e-commerce translation solution offers accurate translations, seamless integrations, and efficient workflows for expanding into new international markets. Our translation technologies provide scalable translations in multiple languages, and the platform’s automation, speed, and quality deliver consistent customer satisfaction scores (CSAT) and cost reduction.

With the help of the proper technology and translation partner, e-commerce companies can overcome language barriers, cultural nuances, and localization challenges while ensuring high-quality customer service and SEO strategies. Get accurate translations, seamless integrations, and efficient workflows for your e-commerce business with Unbabel’s e-commerce translation solution.

Sign up for a free trial today to see how Unbabel’s platform can help your business grow globally.

View our demo to see how Unbabel’s platform can help your business grow globally.

About the Author

Profile Photo of Jessica Florez
Jessica Florez

Jessica Florez is the Senior Content Strategist at Unbabel. She has 10 years of proven success in content marketing strategy and development to build business brands, support global sales teams, drive demand for products and services. She boasts a wide range of expertise in both B2B + B2C integrated marketing roles, for industries that include financial services, healthcare, tech (SaaS), and tour & travel. She earned her BA from the University of Central Florida, and her MFA from Hofstra University.