Translations for small businesses can sound like a waste of budget but businesses today, no matter their size, cater to a multi-ethnic market. It does not matter where they are located. Consumers who speak various languages will use their products or services.
Selling in other languages, although intimidating in the beginning, is a distinct advantage. It is one of the key things for business growth. Business translation services provide very positive results in helping encourage customers speaking languages other than English appreciate and patronise products from other countries.
Translations for small businesses and exporters of all sizes
Translations and language mastering are critical for successful export strategies. No matter if you are a large multinational or a small business looking at starting exporting your products, your hopes for export success will be seriously affected if you can’t bridge the language barrier.
Today’s business scenario requires language barriers to be bridged. Take for example the business in the UK. Research has shown that about three-quarters of British people are not able to speak a foreign language well enough to conduct a basic conversation. This fact hinders their ability to negotiate deals or sell their product. According to a survey, the UK loses around GBP 48bn annually in exports due to their inability (or hesitance) to speak languages other than English.
What about Australia? It is well-known that Australian education has failed to prepare graduates with language skills that are critical to the country’s ongoing economic prosperity and international success. Poor language skills act like a “tax on growth”, hampering small to medium-sized exporters, who are unable to approach overseas markets.
Gain a competitive edge in your domestic market
In 2016, there were over 300 separately identified languages spoken in Australian homes. More than one-fifth (21 per cent) of Australians spoke a language other than English at home. After English, the next most common languages spoken at home were Mandarin, Arabic, Cantonese, and Vietnamese. Tasmania had the highest rate of people speaking only English at home with 88 per cent, while the Northern Territory had the lowest rate at 58 per cent (data from 2016 census, Australian Bureau of Statistics).
Adding languages to your domestic strategy will enable you to gain a competitive edge and to unlock new targeting possibilities.
Reverse your thinking
Many small and medium-sized business owners believe that translation services are an added cost. If that is your way of thinking, it will be harder for you to compete with other businesses that appreciate the major role languages play in the current business arena. Forward-thinking business owners think that language is an important investment. Moreover, you have to reverse your thinking that everybody speaks English and that it is difficult to be in competition with native speakers.
Results from a study done by Common Sense Advisory show that 56.2% of consumers place more importance in learning about a product described in their own language than the product’s price. Also for online businesses, three-quarters of internet users prefer to buy products in their native language rather than a foreign language.
The process of having your website and other product-related information translated and adapted into another language is called localisation, which is a more involved method of language translation.
It is not possible to avoid foreign customers from encountering your product once you have a website. Even if the majority of your customers live in your country, there will be chances for people of different nationalities to see your products. Given this possibility, it is easier for them to learn about your product when the information is in a language they understand.
Translations for small businesses provides numerous benefits to entrepreneurs that are on the verge of going international.
Tip: Translating your website for Australian non-English speaking audience can decouple your search performance as the competition is usually very low for foreign website versions in the local search engine.
Translations for small businesses enable:
New revenue options
Right now, entrepreneurs are taking their business globally, because it provides access to a wider customer base. If the service or product receives wider acceptance, you enjoy an increase in revenue from your new customers and domestic customers as well. When you localise, your revenue potential receives a much-needed boost.
Gain competitive edge
You gain a competitive edge if your competition is not localising yet. But if they are ahead of you on that score, you will be left farther behind if you do not localise. Servicing and selling to a wider customer base in their own language is a powerful business strategy. The language of the customer is what matters, not your own language.
Better and stronger local and international presence
When your content is available in other languages, your domestic consumer base will have the potential to increase. Australia has a multi-cultural society and not everyone speaks English. Presenting your products with information in other languages will endear you to consumers who can better understand your products and services. Your international consumers will thank you for letting them learn about what you offer in the language they speak. Translations for small businesses are an effective way to increase customer base and build customer loyalty.
Better communication with global consumers
Customer support for global customers could prove costlier than expected. If you invest in making your content ready for international customers, customer support costs will be lower as your product information and marketing efforts are localised. You will be talking to your foreign consumers effectively in their own language. You provide them with a great customer experience because they understand your product better.