Website Localization: How to Get Multilingual Content Right

March 18, 2022

Are your landing pages, blogs and product pages resonating with your target markets? If you’re aiming for global growth, you need multilingual website content to connect with your customers. Each content type on your website has its own translation requirement. In this blog post, we explore how to localize your content to maximize your website potential.

Content is the cornerstone of the internet. From the websites we visit and the articles we read, to the ads we (unwittingly) absorb. With so much out there, how do you make your content stand out from the crowd? How do you get your content right?

From the simplicity of the copy to its presentation, good content is key to ensure good customer experience. And it rests on the shoulders of marketers to stay up to date on what their target audience needs — and prefers — from content. 

Your website content has a big part to play as both a functional and engaging step in your buyer’s journey. Starting from the reviews and blogs that engage potential customers, to the landing pages and e-books they promote. Product pages and live-stream chats that need to elicit and support sales. Finally, there are the thought-leadership pieces that engage repeat customers.

Good content is a necessity, but what if your customer doesn’t understand the language?

The importance of website localization

If you’re aiming for global growth, you need to be able to talk to your customers in a language they understand. 

It’s easy to fall into the trap that one English-only website will suffice. English does, after all, remain the single most commonly used language online. Yet, it still represents only around a quarter of internet users, and that’s both native and non-native speakers. For consumers who speak English as a second language, it’s generally more effective to address them in their own native tongue.  

The Unbabel Global Multilingual CX report shows that using native languages plays a huge role in building customer loyalty. 73% of global consumers would be loyal to a brand that offers support in their native language. 

Moreover, 2 out of 3 global consumers believe it’s extremely or very important that brands offer an end-to-end customer experience in their native language, and 75% would switch to a new brand that markets products or services in their native language, according to the same report. 

Properly localizing your website also boosts your visibility and SEO within each market, helping you reach more potential customers. We’ll work with you to identify the right keywords in each language and ensure the translated content is optimized to give you the best chance of achieving strong organic search results in each market. 

Choosing the right translation for your content

Of course, not all content is the same. The content you create for your ebooks and white papers reads different to that for your blogs and product pages or catalogs. The language and context on your homepage, service pages and legal pages is also different.

Then there is content that you don’t create: user-generated content. From social media comments to customer reviews, these are equally important to your brand. 77% of consumers ‘always’ or ‘regularly’ read reviews when browsing for local businesses (up from 60% in 2020).

Each type of content has its own requirements and purposes. So different types of content demand different levels of localization. Here are a few examples.

User-generated content

Sometimes speed outweighs complete accuracy, as might be the case for customer reviews. You might even look to machine translation (MT) to fulfill these translation requirements. A custom MT engine learns from your previous translations. It allows you to to scale up your translation capability without scaling up the budget, which is useful when handling large volumes of user-generated content.

Product pages and catalogs

Product descriptions often have a reasonable amount of repeated content. They are another good use case for MT. If your descriptions are your brand, think luxury fashion goods, you might prefer to use a traditional translation workflow of one human translator and one human proofreader to ensure the high-quality translation you need. 

Homepage and service pages

These are the foundation of your brand and services, so accuracy and tone is vital. You’ll most likely want this content to be localized to the highest possible degree using On-Brand Translation. This can include different numbers of translators, with marketing expertise as well as sector expertise, to achieve the best translation outcome. 

Ebooks and white papers

For these content types, On-Brand Translation is often the best performing solution. Usually, this involves working with native-speaking translators who are industry experts. Again, you may want your process to include multiple translators, or to involve your own in-house subject matter experts. 

Get your multilingual website content right

Your website is the biggest touchpoint that represents your brand online, and it’s important to get your multilingual content right. To maximize its potential, you need good content, in the right language. It’s not a case of one size fits all for your localization; each piece of content needs the right translation service to fulfill its own individual function.

Are you ready to take your website content global? Reach out to our localization experts to get started.

About the Author

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Content Team

Unbabel’s Content Team is responsible for showcasing Unbabel’s continuous growth and incredible pool of in-house experts. It delivers Unbabel’s unique brand across channels and produces accessible, compelling content on translation, localization, language, tech, CS, marketing, and more.